Lisa Gibson knows firsthand that losing a loved one to addiction is devastating. Her son Jay died in February 2018 after an alcohol-related brain injury. One source of consistent support for Lisa has been Jay’s many friends.
These friends immediately engaged in supporting the cause Jay’s family choose to highlight at the celebrations of Jay’s life in Brooklyn, NY, and Denton, TX: SMART Recovery. As a result of the outpouring of support, SMART Recovery suggested the creation of the Jay Gibson Education & Outreach Fund (Fund).
Since then, Lisa has traveled to see these friends in Denton and Brooklyn a number of times, including around Jay’s birthday last September. But, Lisa says, not this year:
This time it’s different, because of the pandemic. I’ve gotten together before with his friends in Texas and New York…I’m extremely discouraged that I’m not going to be with his friends this year.
The Fund has made a significant impact during this time of COVID-19 challenges. Much like Lisa’s current inability to get in-person support from Jay’s friends, many SMART Recovery participants are left without access to the support of in-person meetings. This has meant moving meetings online via the Zoom platform, with licensing and other costs.
The Jay Gibson Education and Outreach Fund has helped meet this critical need. In fact, there are now 70 SMART Recovery groups in three states that are able to meet weekly via Zoom for the next six months, directly because of the Fund. Thousands of people getting help, sharing their struggles, supporting each other. Lisa understands the great value that has been made possible by her tragic loss:
I think it’s a lifeline…people who are in recovery need that connection when cravings happen, that’s the beauty of the SMART meetings even before the pandemic.
You can make a donation directly to the Jay Gibson Education & Outreach Fund on the SMART Recovery website.
About SMART Recovery
SMART Recovery’s 4-Point Program® helps people recover from all types of addictive behaviors, including: alcohol abuse & addiction, drug abuse & addiction, substance abuse, gambling addiction, and addiction to negative activities.
SMART Recovery sponsors face-to-face meetings around the world, and daily online meetings. In addition, our online message board provide forums to learn about SMART Recovery and obtain addiction recovery support.
Visit www.smartrecovery.org to learn more.