Last month we launched the ETHOS Series. This sequence of one-day seminars held across four cities brings actionable business ethics training to addiction treatment providers.
For those who attend, the seminar is not only an investment in training, but also an investment in the recovery community. Part of the total revenue generated from the ETHOS Series will benefit 10,000 Beds, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing treatment scholarships to individuals without financial resources.
Unsure if you should attend one of our seminars? Over the next few weeks, we will be highlighting the expertise and passion of our ETHOS speakers, who will get to the heart of why this program matters. To kick things off, we sat down with ETHOS beneficiary, Jean Krisle, to get a personal look at why the seminar series is so important to her and her nonprofit, 10,000 Beds.
Recovery Brands: You walked what you describe as “the gray mile” to visit your son at the county jail during his active addiction. How did this experience shape the 10,000 Beds vision to provide treatment scholarships to those in need?
Jean: The “Gray Mile” blog post I wrote is my personal story of walking the long, dreary, and very gray halls of the county jail to visit my son for the very first time after he had been arrested and detained for a DUI. The overwhelming feeling of hopelessness and despair was one of the most depressing emotions I’ve ever experienced, and it scared me. It made me fear for him more than anything. How could anyone find HOPE in such a dismal environment? This experience stuck with me and the feeling of helplessness I felt then is something 10,000 Beds strives to eliminate. A core tenant of our mission is to protect an addict’s right to treatment — this assurance reinvigorates those who may feel financially or otherwise unequipped to seek help.
Recovery Brands: The 10,000 Beds program takes a unique approach to scholarships by connecting with treatment centers and asking them to commit at least one bed per year to the 10,000 Beds program. What inspired this model?
Jean: After being overwhelmed during my son’s addiction, not knowing where to go, who to trust, or how to even begin helping him the right way, I entered the addiction treatment industry and worked as a marketing rep for a short time. During this period, I would speak with potential clients who needed help but had no resources. Oftentimes, I would tour beautiful treatment centers with empty beds that same day. I felt there was a problem that needed a solution: people in need + empty beds = scholarship opportunities.
The reality is that nearly every person in this industry is in it to help others, so when I approached several treatment centers with my idea, all were 100 percent supportive. At this moment, I knew I was going to be able to help a lot of people. I love this industry because of the goodness in people’s hearts; the desire to be better every day; and the treatment providers who are generous, philanthropic and willing to donate at least one bed a year on scholarship through our program.
Recovery Brands: Since establishing 10,000 Beds in 2014, why did you become especially invested in the addiction treatment industry’s ethical marketing and operation practices?
Jean: As in any industry where there is huge profit to be made, greed can also be found. Most everyone enters this industry to help others and most stay in it for the same reason. However, there is a percentage of our industry who have forgotten why they started working in addiction treatment and now focus only on making money at the expense of the client. It’s sick, it’s intolerable, and it has to stop.
Recovery Brands: Your professional experience – understanding both the patient and provider journey – has afforded you a unique perspective and distinct expertise. What ultimately persuaded you to sell your home, purchase an RV, and take this knowledge and your program on the road?
Jean: A) The stigma. I am tired of the stigma attached to those in recovery. They are often undervalued, marginalized, and disregarded. People in recovery are my heroes. They have overcome more than I can even imagine. It’s time to celebrate their strengths and help others understand that this segment of our population is vital and worthwhile.
B) Awareness. “No more picket fences” is a phrase I borrow from one of my 10,000 Beds board members. We can’t keep pretending that our family isn’t affected by addiction, or that our friends haven’t been touched by addiction, or that our employees aren’t struggling with addiction. Addiction is everywhere and no one is immune. Addiction is not something to be embarrassed about — it’s a disease. If we are going to fight it effectively, we have to look it straight in the eyes, acknowledge it, and then fight it with everything we’ve got.
Recovery Brands: How does the ETHOS Series align with your mission and why do you think addiction professionals should attend?
Jean: Our mission is to defend an addict’s right to treatment, to promote ethics in the addiction industry, and to partner with extraordinary treatment providers to provide scholarships for those without resources.This conference will touch on all three elements of the 10,000 Beds mission statement.
The ETHOS Series is focused, affordable, centralized, comprehensive, and it’s a one-day program. Subject matter experts will speak on their topics and will provide attendees with an action plan they can begin using immediately. This conference will definitely provide a measurable ROI to treatment program owners who invest their dollars in this training program. It’s a no brainer.