By implementing leadership strategies we encourage, enlighten, and empower individuals by integrating life skills, mental health, and substance use prevention services stimulating positive personal change which leads to more productive lives.
No need is too small and no voice is too quiet to be heard. We will devote the time and energy necessary to educate, advocate, and help.
We have the cause, you have the effect. No matter how young or old, you can always break the mold.
WHAT WE DO
Whether you're struggling with a particular issue, or just can’t shake the feeling that there should be more to life, SOOAR can help. We provide a caring environment in which you can identify and explore those issues that may be getting in the way of a more rewarding life by providing insights and tools needed to move beyond limiting beliefs and behaviors. We provide youth, families, professionals, public officials, communities, and organizations with programs, information, and resources to prevent substance use and behavioral health issues. We offer a variety of services including:
Substance use prevention
Student assistance programs
Life skills coaching
Problem ID and referral services
Cultural competency and humility
Human trafficking awareness and prevention
CCAR Peer Recovery Coaching and more...
In 2000, there were 108 fatal drug poisonings in Out-Wayne County and only 40 that specified an opioid or heroin as a cause of the death. In 2018, the number of fatal drug poisonings nearly quadrupled to 416 with 221 specifying an opioid and 130 specifying heroin. Historically, Out-Wayne County has had more total fatal drug poisonings and more poisonings specifying opioids or heroin than any other jurisdiction in the State. Between 2004 and 2019, 3,608 Wayne County residents under the age of 40 were diagnosed with Hepatitis C Virus (HCV). Where information on substance use was collected, nearly 80% of those interviewed self-reported a history of ever injecting drugs. Out-Wayne County also has one of the highest annual new HIV diagnoses (76 in 2018), and the county as a whole has the highest burden of persons living with HIV in the state.
OUT-WAYNE HARM REDUCTION INTIATIVE
Historically, there weren’t any State-sponsored Syringe Services/Harm reduction programs outside the City of Detroit. Last Year, SOOAR partnered with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to change the narrative. Why Inkster?
The City of Inkster was selected because it is the hometown of SOOAR’s Executive Director, Valerie Kelley-Bonner. She was raised in the city from the age of 2. She left Inkster, but Inkster never left her heart which is why she has returned to Inkster to assist throughout the years. As a prevention consultant, she understands how the social determinants of health impact individual and community health outcomes and has always focused on the unique challenges and conditions associated with urban life: the ease at which disease spreads in an urban setting, physical and mental stress associated with urban living, and the spread of STD’s/STI’s, and drug use in an urban setting.
After a few meetings with Mayor Wimberly, Chief Riley, Pastor Velma Overman, and the Inkster Ministerial Alliance, Valerie Kelley-Bonner presented a proposal to change the city’s paraphernalia ordinance to City Council. The Council voted unanimously to change the ordinance allowing SOOAR to operate an SSP/harm reduction program in the city.