The opioid epidemic now claims more lives in the U.S. than car crashes. Rehabilitation facilities are filled to capacity and 90% of those receiving treatment will relapse within a year. In fact, opioid overdose is the largest cause of death in people under 50 years old (https://law.georgia.gov/opioid-abuse). Patients who have experienced a period of successful recovery sometimes relapse and die at high rates due to the increased strength, impurity and toxicity of drugs being sold on the black market. Patients and their families need new approaches as this epidemic leaves a swath of destruction in its wake.
As Executive Director of Recovery Outfitters, in Cumming Georgia, Kimberly Castro Owens takes a novel approach to recovery by applying the skills and knowledge gained from her Master’s degree in Conflict Management (MSCM) from KSU. By teaching patients and their families the skills of anger management, interpersonal communication, recovery from domestic violence, relationships skills, negotiation and problem-solving, Castro Owens is able to impart the coping skills needed to help them get and stay healthy.
When asked about the link between conflict and addiction, Castro Owens remarked that "68% of delinquent youth witnessed their mother’s abuse at the hands of a domestic batterer and were 50% more likely than others to abuse drugs and alcohol.” These are root causes of addiction and relapse. By learning productive rather than destructive ways to manage conflict, the cycle of abuse and addiction can end.
Students come to the MSCM program from many different fields: education, health care, business, law, diplomacy, humanitarian relief and others. The addiction recovery work done by Castro Owens highlights the important contributions made by Conflict Management grads to improve the lives of Georgians every day.
Posted: April 26, 2018