Celebrate lives rescued from addictions in Seaside Heights
A Toms River-based group that devotes its entire year to resolving the problems of substance abuse takes a day to celebrate the vindication of recovery, and invites you to join the occasion.
HOPE Sheds Light, the nonprofit that assists and educates families wrestling with addiction issues, stages its second annual Celebration of Hope Walk, on the Seaside Heights Boardwalk, October 3.
More than 350 supporters turned out for the inaugural walk in 2014.
This year, founders Ron Rosetto, Steven Willis and Arvo Prima have enlisted the Toms River Police Department to help spread the word about their event and their work. Rosetto has a deeply personal commitment, having lost a son to addiction in 2012.
"At the Celebration of Hope Walk, the community can come together and learn about addiction and recovery and provide hope to those families," Rosetto said in a prepared statement. "Those suffering don't know where to turn for help."
Prima added that it's one small way to counter the overwhelming number of negative stories tied t substance abuse, "and by bringing hope and education to the community, we support each other and those affected. We show recovery is possible. Together, we help each other."
Toms River PD Spokesman Ralph Stocco said that the department's commitment represents a broadening of focus, from simply arrests and prosecutions to rebuilding lives.
"Our goal is not to just put people in jail; it is to hopefully be the catalysis for future recovery and be participatory in the healing process," Stocco said. "We will try every avenue we know of to get them the help they need if they want it, which in turn will reduce crime."
There is no fee to take part, but organizers suggest $10 donations. Registration will begin at 8 AM on the beach at Hiering Avenue. Learn more at the HOPE Sheds Light web page.