Transitioning to Recovery Helps People Return Home

Volunteer Behavioral Health Care System received a three year grant from the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration to assist individuals in local jails successfully transition home. The Transitioning to Recovery (TTR) program uses a team-based approach that includes reentry planning and community-based treatment services for people dealing with addiction or co-occurring disorders released from local jail systems in six rural Tennessee counties. These include Sumner, Wilson, Smith, White, Cumberland and Overton Counties in the VBHCS service area. The program provides screening, assessment and reentry planning for people who are within three months of release and have been sentenced to more than three months of jail. As part of the program, participants will be able to address addiction, co-occurring disorders and trauma issues with a community-based treatment program. To facilitate a successful move back home, the transition team will begin providing treatment and recovery services as soon as the participant is released from jail. The team will also help participants to address other life issues such as lack of job history and employability, lack of vocational and job skills and social support. Addressing these core components will provide participants with opportunities for successful reintegration and long-term community tenure.

The transition team will incorporate evidence-based models to increase engagement into services and offer hope in life-long recovery. Using Motivational Interviewing and the Stages of Change Model, cognitive behavioral therapy and intensive, clinical case management, the program model is grounded in strong practice strategies that will ensure positive outcomes for those being served. Addressing criminogenic needs and risks is a vital component of the individualized transition program.

Impacting these core life domains and building local, grassroots coalitions will provide stronger outcomes related recidivism and the burden on the local jail system and community. The program plans to serve 300 individuals transitioning into rural communities across the Central Appalachian region of Tennessee.