Nearly $2M grant providing SU new opportunities to address opioid epidemic on Eastern Shore

SALISBURY, Md.- Various organizations on the Eastern Shore have been taking steps to address the opioid epidemic, and now Salisbury University is joining in on those efforts.

“I think it is a big problem and it’s good they are taking steps to help with it,” Georgia Foster, an SU student, said.

SU recently created the Salisbury University Eastern Shore Opioid- Impacted Family Support Program with the help of a nearly 2 million dollar, four year, grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration.

“Provides a training opportunity that does not currently exist within the 9 counties of the Eastern Shore, so it’s really exciting,” Teresa Simmons, the director of the Center for Healthy Communities with the College of Health and Human Services, said.

The program will recruit predominately people from the existing workforce and provide them with training with an internship and in-service apprenticeship.

This in turn will increase the number of certified workers who are prepared to work with families impacted by opioid use disorders.

“They are able to engage a little bit differently so I think it will just bolster what we have available and build larger inter-professional teams to really address the crisis,” Simmons said.

The program will also give SU community health students and social work students a way to get certified.

“It feels really good to be a apart of the university and knowing that it’s not only concerned with the well being of the students but well being of the community’s that its in,” Hannah Carter, an SU student, said.

We are told the program does not start until January, but they are already collaborating with stakeholders to come up with a comprehensive and collaborating program.

“Really wanting to maintain those relationships and continuing to build them and to meet the needs of our community,” Simmons said.

We are told their goal is to train an overall number of 78 people during the four years, and to they said they will start their training’s and meetings virtually.

We are told they are still accepting people for the program.

If you’re interested in joining, you can send an email to Simmons at TFSIMMONS@salisbury.edu

Categories: Local News, Maryland