On January 6, 2017, we opened the doors at Roots Through Recovery and brought a different kind of addiction rehab program to Long Beach. The Roots program is built on the belief that an experiential, exploratory approach to treatment leads to meaningful and lasting change from the inside out.
The therapies offered at Roots are as progressive and engaging as the philosophy itself and include drumming, breath work, music and art therapies, somatic experiencing, and mindfulness meditation. Research shows that these therapies, when used along with traditional therapies like cognitive-behavioral therapy, engage clients in the recovery process and improve the outcomes of rehab. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration stresses that since there is no single pathway to recovery, a holistic rehab program is essential for successfully treating addiction.1
Roots Through Recovery’s business development director Noah Warren has seen firsthand how this holistic approach helps people recover from addiction for the long-term. “Our clients come to us in their most vulnerable state, emotionally broken and seeking answers, and oftentimes with very little hope or a vision for the future,” Warren says.
“Our program addresses substance abuse by treating the whole person—their mind, body and spirit—and helping our clients rediscover their passion and purpose in life.” By treating the underlying issues behind the substance abuse that led to the addiction, Warren says, Roots helps people discover who they really are and uncover their true potential.
What 2018 Holds for Rehab at Roots Through Recovery
The impact Roots has had on the recovery and professional treatment communities in Long Beach has been powerful, Warren says. During its first year, Roots opened up the facility to outside meetings in order to increase access, bringing weekly Refuge Recovery, Crystal Meth Anonymous and Codependency Anonymous meetings to the area. Roots’ Lunch and Learn series offers professional development to others working in the field. Guest speakers in 2017 included several leading authorities on addiction treatment, including Dr. Deborah Sweet and Bill and Linda Woodbury.
In 2018, three new programs will be added to the lineup at Roots. These include a family program and a medication-assisted treatment program, as well as an LGBTQIA-specific program that will debut in February. In addition to these programs, Roots will be enhancing trauma-based treatments, adding dialectical behavior therapy, neurofeedback and psychodrama.
Roots Executive Director Eric Johnston looks forward to the organization’s second year as much as he did the first. His vision for the future is clear: “I want Roots to become an industry-wide name that is known not only for its clinical programming, but also the human connection that we create through all of our services,” he says.
The human connection and individualized care are hallmarks of what has made the first year of Roots Through Recovery so successful. Nicole Koontz, director of client services at Roots, attributes this success to a small, intimate setting, the individualized one-on-one care and the trauma-informed modalities of care offered. “We are a family, and our clients can feel the love from day one. Our whole team is involved in the client’s care.”
One-Year Celebration at Roots Through Recovery
A celebration event on February 6 will offer guests a firsthand look at the various services offered through Roots. The festivities will include breakout sessions with several group facilitators, including a Drumming for Healing session, a guided meditation and a Somatic Experiencing group.
Speakers for the event include Todd “Z-Man” Zalkins, who was the best friend of the late Bradley Nowell, the lead singer of the band Sublime. Zalkins, a Long Beach native in recovery himself, will speak about addiction and how it affects individuals and families. An upcoming Roots Through Recovery eBook about Zalkins will focus on his own battle with addiction and subsequent recovery, the opioid crisis in Southern California and Zalkins’ involvement in conducting interventions for families struggling with addiction.
As Roots Through Recovery continues to build on its momentum in 2018 and beyond, additional services and activities will be implemented to enhance the recovery of clients in rehab. “Watching the clients go through these experiences is what really moves me, because it proves that our program is having a positive impact on them,” says Johnston. “We are on the verge of building a truly unique treatment experience.”