Champions Program

About the program

 

Helpline Champions are an inspired group of individuals who reach out in simple, powerful ways in their own communities to increase use of harm reduction services, substance use disorder treatment, and recovery support services in Massachusetts. They are people from communities across MA with a desire to take concrete action to support those living with a substance use disorder, whether actively using or in recovery. The Champion program aims to increase awareness and use of the Helpline.

How it works

  • Engaged, inspired community members share Helpline information and materials with their own in-person or online networks (neighborhood, organization, social media, etc.)
  • Champions take creative, local action tailored to their community to build awareness of the Helpline and its services

Why it works

  • Helpline Champions are experts in their own community
  • The program relies on existing trusted networks to spread information about the Helpline

Anyone can be a Helpline Champion

We welcome all people to become Champions in their community. Helpline Champions include, but are not limited to:

  • People actively using
  • People in recovery – early and long-term
  • Providers/referrers
  • Young adults
  • Concerned and affected family members and friends
  • Coalition members
  • Recovery coaches
  • Peer support specialists
  • Retirees
  • Faith leaders

Contact us if you’d like to learn more about becoming a Helpline Champion.

Champion Workshop information

The Helpline Champion workshop series is an interactive, online space designed bring together current and new Champions. In two 2-hour sessions, we will learn about the MA Substance Use Helpline and the Champion program and build relationships and skills to support Helpline Champions in their outreach across Massachusetts.

Our workshops are held over Zoom to ensure the safety of all and to allow Champions from across the state to meet, learn from, and inspire one another.

Workshop Content

Session 1: Building relationships & Helpline overview 

  • Brief overview and history the Champions program.
  • In small group spaces, we will share what motivates us to do this work and who has inspired us in our life.
  • Meet our Screening and Information Specialists and clinicians. Learn from them so you can feel confident sharing about Helpline values, services, staff, and website navigation.

Session 2: Outreach strategies & Community mapping

  • Community mapping overview. We will look at: What communities am I part of? Who do I know? Where are the spaces I connect with people? Who is not currently well connected to services?
  • Hear from current Champions about how they engage their communities. We will examine: What are and where are the needs in my community? What is my outreach style? How can I integrate it into my day-to-day life? Where will I begin?

If you’d like more information about our Champion workshop, please let us know HERE.

Registration for the Champion Workshop

The MA Helpline holds our free, virtual 2-part workshop series twice per year in the Fall and Spring. 

Season Registration opens Workshop start date
Spring 2022 April 1, 2022 May 10, 2022
Fall 2022 September 7, 2022 October 6, 2022

We can also host a Champion workshop with your organization. All our workshops are supported by optional monthly Champion Learning Community meetings where Champions from across MA gather to share successes and challenges, build skills, and build community. All are welcome to join our monthly Learning Community meetings. See below for more about our monthly meetings that you are welcome to join anytime.

Monthly Champion Learning Community meetings

We hold meetings open to all on a monthly basis. They are intended to bring us together to build community and share resources and skills. This online drop-in gathering space is for those actively working as Champions in their communities and for those interested in learning more about the Champion program, so feel free to invite friends, loved ones, and colleagues. 

In our monthly meetings we envision:

  • A trusted, supportive community space for existing and new Champions
  • A time to build relationships between Champions and Helpline staff
  • A place to learn and grow personally and professionally
  • A space to build skills and share skills
  • An entry point for new Champions

We hope you’ll join us! We are taking a break to rest and restore in December. Our next virtual monthly meeting will be on Thursday, January 12th, from 12-1 pm. Please contact us if you’d like to attend our monthly meeting or learn more about becoming a Helpline Champion.

Order Helpline materials

Sharing Helpline materials in your community is a great way to spread the word about the Helpline and connect more people to the support they may need.

Order free materials here.