Our Recovery Month Event was held this year on Saturday, August

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A warm and sunny Saturday, August 22nd, gave us a great Gateway to Recovery
Celebration at the Roger Williams Memorial National Park in downtown Providence. We
estimate that close to 1000 people attended, to provide information about recovery
services, to listen to music, to eat, to watch the kids have fun, to listen to our speakers,
and, most importantly, to be together to both celebrate recovery and to provide a positive
face of recovery.
The Park is a wonderful venue for the event and it is our intention to hold our annual
Recovery Month Event at the Park in the future.
Craig Stenning, MHRH Director, was again our very enthusiastic master of ceremonies
and kept the action moving all day with his awesome energy.
We were privileged to have over 50 exhibitors provide informational tables.
Our speakers included: political supporters of recovery such as Providence Mayor
Cicilline, Rep. Steve Costantino, Sen. Josh Miller, Rep. Edwin Pacheco, and Rep.
Patricia Serpa; the national Director of Faces & Voices of Recovery, Pat Taylor, very
graciously came to celebrate with us; and inspiration was provided to us by our good
friend and strong voice for recovery, Tom Coderre, and by Gabrielle Abbate from
We were reminded of our recent losses when Lori Dorsey led a Moment of Silence in
honor of Steve Horowitz, who was a long-time leader of our recovery community, and in
honor of Rep. Thomas Slater, one of our staunch allies in the legislature.
The event was energized by the many children that were brought by their parents. The
kids, as usual, enjoyed the Reptiles, and most were decorated by the face painting
provided by the artists from The Teen Institute (it was great to have the energy of the
Teen Institute ‘Teens’ there) and by the tireless artiste Connie Cirelli from MHRH.
The live music was provided by Jim Chapin, Joe Benton, John Prince and Healing
Drums. Robin Frye also spoke and sang. In addition, our DJ’s, including David P., kept
the music hopping.
Beautiful and moving quilts from The Kent Center, The Providence Center and Phoenix
House were exhibited.
Pat Cafaro was extremely busy all day taking hundreds of photos. We are grateful for her
enthusiastic and talented work.
The event was coordinated by the Dept. of MHRH and by the RI Recovery Month
Coalition. There are many people that the Coalition wishes to acknowledge and thank.
They include:
Diane Angell and the wonderful staff of Roger Williams Memorial National Park
Discovery House for the T-Shirts
Aids Quilt Project for the stands
Rep. Bruce Long for the Del’s (always popular and which went very quickly!)
Dr. Steve Peligian and Superior Bakery in Cranston for Pizza
Gateway Healthcare for Pizza
New Day Community Residence for the Ice
Addiction Recovery Institute for food
The Kent Center for food
Sam Khouri for food
CODAC for manning the food tables
Kevin Skelly and Alan Ward for the novelties
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The Providence Center for providing the truck, tables and crew
The guys from The Providence Center Residential program provided invaluable help with
all the setting up and breaking down.
It was generally agreed that this year’s event was the best yet. And we look forward to
more next year as we celebrate the many benefits that recovery has given us.
The RI Recovery Month Coalition members are:
Jimmy Gillen
Lisa Stevens
Laura Mahan
Lori Dorsey
David Dorsey
Arlene Stoltz
Maria Sansiveri
Stefanie Coia
Doras Moore
Peggy Richards
Jackie Patricio
Dan Fitzpatrick
Pat Cafaro
Sandra DelSesto
Craig Stenning
Ian Knowles