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Blog > Sobriety Foundation Fills Important and Under Recognized Need

Sobriety Foundation Fills Important and Under Recognized Need

Sobriety Foundation
| January 3, 2018

ChandlerJordanaProfessionalPhotoWritten by Chandler Jordana

Multiple studies have shown that an individual in recovery has a significantly enhanced opportunity for long-term sobriety if they transition to a sober living facility directly from residential treatment. However, an unfortunate majority of people leaving residential treatment to begin a new life often have few resources or places to turn for help.

Due to the lack of follow-up support, many patients leaving expensive residential treatment facilities return to their previous environments and ultimately relapse, nullifying months of dedication, arduous work and investments — both monetary and through sweat equity.

The Utah-based Sobriety Foundation is looking to change that. Founded in 2012 by a small network of people committed to the importance of sober living, the Sobriety Foundation provides financially disadvantaged Utah adults with an opportunity to achieve long-term sustainable sobriety.

“We wanted to keep all of the money that our foundation raises within the State of Utah, because the problem is so huge here”, said Board Secretary and Treasurer Susan Peterson, one of the Foundation’s founding individuals.

Sobriety Foundation is the only nonprofit organization of its kind within Utah, a state that ranks fourth nationwide for overdose deaths and first for opioid addiction prevalence. When compared to individuals living in other states, addiction disproportionately affects Utah residents.

“Part of the problem with addiction is that it impacts the frontal lobe of the brain, which is the place where our judgement, consequential thinking, logic and reasoning are”, said James Ott, Board Chair of the Sobriety Foundation and Licensed Clinical Social Worker. “As these get shut down with continued use, our ability to differentiate between what’s healthy and what’s not is greatly impaired.”

According to a 2016 annual report by the Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health, 134,172 adults in Utah needed acute treatment from drug and alcohol dependence. Utah’s aggregate population is just over three million, and an approximate two million of those are adults. This means that 6.7 percent of the population has a drug or alcohol addiction, which is disproportionate to other states.

“Addiction doesn’t happen in a social vacuum”, reiterated board member and Clinical Chairperson Cassandra Gordon. “It happens within the context of families, friends, jobs, communities and environment.”

The Sobriety Foundation recognizes this, and takes a collaborative approach by partnering with local donors who want to see lasting positive change in their local community. The organization also works with Utah-based treatment centers and nonprofit organizations to fight the addiction crisis in our state, a crisis that has been underemphasized and underreported. They recognize that only together can the statistics be actively combated to help end the Utah addiction epidemic.

Of the individuals granted a Sobriety Foundation grant over the last five years, over 75 percent have gone on to enjoy sustainable sobriety, living healthy and productive lives. This same group in long-term recovery has also experienced a new ability to foster healthy relationships, increased employment prospects for well-paying jobs and an overall improved quality of life and independence.

For more information regarding the Sobriety Foundation, visit The Sobriety Foundation is a not-for-profit 501c3 organization.

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