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Seeing What's Next in Recovery...

Posted by Joe Antle on June 9, 2020 10:35 AM EDT
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The word recovery has so many connotations.  But recovery, in the broadest sense of the word, may never be more timely.  The last three months of heart-breaking issues, battling COVID-19, social distancing, economic disruption of a magnitude that would have been previously unimaginable and.....

...the intensity of the civil unrest caused by the tragic death of George Floyd in Minneapolis has been terrible.  In fact, it's hard to fathom what is the best way forward.  And the polarizing impact of partisan politics, media distortion of the interpretation of the meaning of facts and continued risk to further economic devastation triggered by the riots and looting, masquerading as civic-minded protests only add to the confusion.

Disruption seems almost like too passive a word to describe the confluence of all of this horror.  And election-year politics make for shocking and at times ludicrous assertions.

Much has been written and said about this over the past four months, and more will be communicated about it as we go through the ongoing uncertainty.  And, in time, given the historic perspective that will bring some enlightenment in sociology, economics, and political science, most of us will see this period (and we all pray it's short-lived on all fronts) as the most tragic period of their lives.

There are three areas that we believe innovation will be present and will surface.  They are all socio-economic issues that are important to all people and thus to all political parties.  And these three areas are an open opportunity for innovation to take hold.  They are civic engagement, prosperity/income parity, and healthy living.  When you think about the corollaries for these three words, civic engagement > violent protests; prosperity/income parity > welfare/government assistance; healthy living > healthcare, then inevitably you arrive at the realization that by involving people in the creation of better solutions rather than have them handed to the people is a better way forward.

With CareTrek we hope to bring the concept of engaged and involved participation, not just by the addicted people being served, but by the multitudes of people from various factions in the community being involved and participating in supporting those in recovery.  It's not just about giving money to nonprofits, but rolling up one's sleeves and participating in the support and administration.  It's not just about having governmental programs assist people in recovery, but the government participating and integrating services and resources from the various factions in the community.  It's not just about the healthcare system, education system and private sector providing funds and free services, but it's about those sectors actually becoming participants in how and when the resources are accessed, set up and deployed.  Finally, it's not just about volunteers who attend meetings but about volunteers who become counselors, peer support specialists, and who "hope"-Help Ordinary People Excel.

The vision we have for CareTrek is to have it play a role, maybe an important role, in being a platform for civic engagement, for the creation of jobs and improving prosperity and for making a measurable difference in the health problems caused by substance abuse and the toll it takes on people physically, emotionally and spiritually.

As the good book says, it is far better to teach people to fish than to simply give them fish.  And innovation, the disruptive kind that works to satisfy the lack of consumption in overshot markets, may be the tool that helps us create progress from the seeds of disruption that surround us now.

So, in the immortal words of Dr. Christensen, and in the title of the third book in his amazing initial trilogy of books led by "The Innovators Dilemma" and "The Innovator's Solution" perhaps "Seeing What's Next" may be a most aptly-titled research-based book whose time may have finally arrived.

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