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Miracles DO happen at Parrott Creek

May 14, 2021, 15:00 PM

There is a saying in the recovery community; "don't leave before the miracle happens." For plenty of young mothers and their children who have been clients at Parrott Creek Child and Family Services’ Children and Mother's Program, they can attest to this phrase.

"Our Children & Mothers Program is led by a team of peer mentors and Traditional Health Workers who provide health system navigation and additional support for young women, and their children, struggling with alcohol or drug misuse at a time of emotional/mental health crisis, facing housing insecurity, and finding themselves uniquely and critically impacted by COVID-19,” says Simon Fulford, Executive Director. The recent expansion of the program couldn’t have come at a better time.

Earlier this year, CareOregon granted a total of $455,000 to eight local organizations, supporting the development or expansion of programs using Traditional Health Workers (THWs) in non-clinical settings. Parrott Creek was one of the eight organizations that received funding.

“Our THWs lived experience helps them understand, in a unique way, the very real struggles that our populations experience,” says Arminda Barnes, Program Manager, Children & Women’s Program. “Having people to go to for support that have that kind of visceral understanding is often key to our clients being able to trust our staff and stick around through the difficult process of recovery and family reunification. Our THW staff (the peers) help the clients hang on until it gets better. Because we believe it CAN get better!"

Along with expanding the Children & Women’s Program, funding also will be applied across programming for three certified Peer Recovery Counselors and two former clients who will gain Certified Recovery Mentor certification through this program.

“Our outreach team is composed of former service users themselves with lived experience, and our partnership with CareOregon supports their engagement as Peer Recovery Counselors, Certified Recovery Mentors, and Certified Drug and Alcohol Counselors,” says Fulford.

"From our experience serving children with Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) for over 50 years, we know that early intervention for families facing houselessness, trauma, and substance misuse could be a tipping point for many future outcomes. While no community has ever been able to fully prevent the ACEs that our children are exposed to, we know that safe, stable, nurturing relationships and environments are necessary to prevent violence, abuse, neglect and destabilization.

Our team of Traditional Health Workers help families navigate the path to sober living, improved health and family reunification. The long-term success of the Children & Mother’s program is that our community’s children have the opportunity to reach their full potential,”

CareOregon believes every child should have this opportunity as well. By providing necessary funding to organizations like Parrott Creek, we work to see that they do. And that’s the CareOregon Effect.

For more information on the services Parrott Creek Child and Family Services provides, visit their website at

To see the impact the Children & Women’s Program can make on lives, watch Megan and Bronsons’s story.

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