SEABROOK, N.J., Nov. 9, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Seabrook House's Vice President of Treatment Services, Stephanie Loebs R.N., B.S.N., was recently named Chairwoman of the Board for National Association for Children of Alcoholics (NACoA).
"I am deeply honored and humbled to be chosen as the Chairwoman of the Board for NACoA because this mission is truly where my heart is," said Loebs. "Right now, 1 in 4 children suffer silently because of the parental abuse or dependence on alcohol or drugs. Because they are children they think the abuse is somehow their fault, and they don't understand that it is the alcohol or drugs that cause the abusive behavior. These children have no one to champion them, no one to help them, and no one to speak for them."
According to Loebs, "As these children grow up they have two options. They either continue the trauma or they become resilient. I want every child to have someone in their corner supporting them and guiding them towards the right choices. It only takes a teacher, a counselor, a minister, or even a neighbor to tell them that it is not their fault. One person can make a difference in what direction a child chooses."
NACoA's mission is to eliminate the adverse impact of alcohol and drug use on children and families. They raise public awareness and provide leadership in public policy at all levels of government. NACoA advocates for appropriate, effective and accessible education and prevention services. They also facilitate and advance professional knowledge and understanding.
Because of her background and current employer, Loebs certainly understands the mission of NACoA. Loeb refers to herself as a person of long term abstinence and 12 Step Recovery, and speaks openly about growing up as a child of alcoholics. As the Vice-President of Treatment Services for Seabrook House, a drug and alcohol treatment center in New Jersey, Loebs sees each day the adverse impact that drug and alcohol abuse can have on children and families.
"Seabrook House has fully supported my involvement with NACoA over the last 2 years," said Loebs. "They understand the importance of the organization's mission to eliminate the adverse impact of alcohol and drug use on children and families. As an affiliate, Seabrook House has also provided financial support to NACoA. Seabrook House and NACoA both understand the impact that drug and alcohol abuse and dependence have on families. I hope that together these organizations, along with the support of other affiliates and the public will allow us to completely eliminate the negative impact that these children experience."
Loebs stated that NACoA has spent lots of time and effort researching "what a child that is adversely impacted by the parental abuse or dependence on drugs or alcohol look like." It is not usually the "bad kid" in class; rather it is the invisible child that is suffering silently until someone comes along and tells them they are special.
Loebs added that if we can get to these children when they are still very young, then we can guide them towards a better path and stop the trauma and the vicious circle of abuse. NACoA is focused on the adverse childhood experiences and making sure that no child is forgotten or never heard.
"Each day I look at my patients and think that 1 in 4 are adult children of alcoholics." said Loebs. "These patients have been powerless over alcohol and drugs long before they ever picked up and started using themselves. I then think about our patients' children, who are sitting at home thinking that if only they could be better, mommy or daddy wouldn't drink so much. I do this work, because I need to give these children a voice. If we can provide positive reinforcement and praise to those children in need, then we can make a difference."
Currently, like other not-for profit organizations, NACoA is struggling. Loebs stated that her main focus as Chairwoman is to make sure that this organization does not disappear because of lack of funding. Her goal is to be comprehensive, raise funds and keep this mission alive.
"As joblessness, homelessness and poverty rise, and as number of veterans returning home with PTSD continues to grow, the abuse and dependency of drugs and alcohol continues to also increase," said Loebs. "We are seeing that more children are being adversely affected by drug and alcohol use in their families and NACoA needs even more support than ever. Everyone should visit the website (www.NACOA.org) and sign up to be a member, or affiliate, and help protect the innocent children suffering in silence.
Loebs said that the people hurt most by drugs and alcohol don't even use them; they are the children of alcoholics and other drug dependent parents.
Seabrook House is an internationally recognized, private CARF-accredited addiction treatment center with several locations. The main facility is located in Bridgeton, NJ, convenient to Pennsylvania, New York and surrounding states. Our 90-day transitional living facility for men, Seabrook House West, is located in north central Pennsylvania in the town of Westfield. Our 90-day transitional living facility for women, Changes, is located on our main campus. A regional office is located in New York City, along with outpatient offices in Cherry Hill and Northfield, NJ. Seabrook House has been helping families find the courage to find recovery from alcoholism, drug addiction, substance abuse and other compulsive diseases since 1974.
To contact Seabrook House, please visit the organization's web site at www.SeabrookHouse.org, or call the 24-hour help line at 1-800-761-7575.
SOURCE Seabrook House