Focus Areas: Addiction & Overdose
The Communities Project
Susan Buchholz serves as the lead facilitator and her community’s primary liaison to The Communities Project. In this role, Susan has worked to develop and constructively engage a multi-sector coalition that has been working collaboratively to improve outcomes for individuals and families and to reduce stigma through genuine engagement, connection, and understanding. Susan has used the ongoing training and guidance received from The Communities Project to help channel local despair into targeted action. To help put a face on local addiction statistics, Susan founded The LUV Project (Listening to Unheard Voices). The project, which utilizes storytelling, prioritizes conversations with traditionally marginalized individuals, such as those struggling with both addiction and homelessness, in order to gain a deeper understanding of the barriers to recovery and to illustrate that people are much more than their addiction.
The Communities Project began as a grassroots pilot project of the national movement known as Facing Addiction with NCADD (National Council Alcoholism and Drug Dependence), an outgrowth of the 2015 UNITE to Face Addiction Rally. The vision for The Communities Project was to identify and train 15 communities from across the nation who would operate at a grassroots level, to shift public perception, tackle stigma, and offer real solutions to our nation’s most urgent health crisis. The Communities Project is now a standalone national initiative focused on investing in community leadership to amplify programmatic accomplishments, expand collective efforts, and dramatically escalate opportunities to save lives.