Our mission is to combat the stigma associated with alcoholism and addiction through action. To shine a light on the true magnitude of the drug epidemic while raising awareness about treatment options and fostering sober living opportunities for those in need.
This journey is to help raise awareness of the tremendous problem of addiction, combat the stigma's associated with the disease, and help those suffering get the treatment they deserve.
I will be walking from Kensington Ave, Philadelphia, one of the most profound places of hopelessness you will see in the US, and also an open air drug market. To Santa Monica, California, passing through an area known as Skid Row, another example of what people in addiction endure.
The initial funding will help assist with costs associated with the trip such as gear, equipment, food and places to stay. I will be sleeping in a tent as well as hotels along the way. The remaining amount will be the initial round of funding for the non-profit Addiction Awareness Across America.
The paperwork is in the works. The non-profit will specifically focus on getting people into treatment, offering awareness about the disease and to the different 12-step and spiritual based solutions for alcoholism and drug addiction, and help provide for sober living after initial treatment has concluded.
I am an alcoholic and drug addict, and my name is Brian Mincher. It was never my choice to have this disease, just like millions of other Americans. Unfortunately there is still stigma's attached to addiction, that hopefully this will help combat. I first started getting help, when I was honest with my alcoholism in 2016. I was not a first time winner, as they say. I am not doing this trip to get sober, I am already in recovery and work a spiritual program of action from the moment I wake up. I follow the most well-known and successful 12-step program that has principles I follow to my upmost ability everyday!
Help as many addicts and alcoholics as possible by walking across America. To spread love and optimism along with the knowledge and determination necessary to develop effective programs of treatment and recovery. Through this walk and these relationships Brian also hopes to raise funds for the non-profit organization Addiction Awareness Across America, Inc.
Addiction is a disease that can strike any person at any time. It does not discriminate against age, gender, race, or social class and more often than not afflicted individuals need to self-diagnose in order to begin treatment. These factors contribute to a very harmful stigma—the feeling that the addict is choosing drugs or alcohol over family, friends and work. The truth is that there is no way of knowing who might get caught in the grip of addiction. What we do know is that this is a massive (and growing) problem in the United States. An estimated 20 million Americans suffer from Substance Use Disorder—the disease now recognized in the DSM-V.
Today’s society is sadly familiar with the word “epidemic”. Possibly, so much that the world’s once pointed terror has been dulled. Addiction needs to be acknowledged as a pandemic. It needs to be battled with urgency. In 2020 alone it is estimated that 200,000 people died as a direct result of alcohol abuse or drug overdose in the United States. These harrowing numbers don’t even include the suicides that may have resulted from depression or mental illness that often comes with addiction. Over the last decade, the statistics—deaths caused by addiction and alcohol—have drastically increased. The problem is not going away. It’s getting worse. The “system” in place for treating this deadly illness has not risen to the challenge. There are things the Government can do and put more effort towards these problems. A suggestion I feel strongly about with “the system” would be a much larger pool of money to help addicts and/or alcoholics to get into rehabilitation programs, specifically for those that are deterred from this option due to a lack of health insurance coverage or income. We plan to raise awareness while educating addicts and the public as we work towards what should be a unified goal of rehabilitation.
We’ve spent too much time as a society misunderstanding alcoholism and addiction. This is still reflected in most available treatment options today. The best treatment centers often carry a prohibitive financial cost. Many of the twelve-step programs are outdated, based on attraction rather than promotion. Meaning there is little to no advertising of the programs available for recovery. Members are preached to remain anonymous, rather than being open about their experience of hope and recovery. Brian is extremely proud to be an addict and is very grateful for his success he has had with the oldest twelve step program founded in 1939. Dealing with addiction is incredibly complex—each case, every individual is unique. The barriers to begin effective treatment can leave addicts feeling helpless, which can often result in returning to drugs and alcohol as a solution to their problems. This needs to change.
After an addict has self-diagnosed, found effective treatment and entered recovery the journey to sobriety and reentering the “real world” is not nearly complete. This key element is something far too few individuals and programs consider. Addicts are consistently in a hurry to return to families, friends, jobs after relatively brief periods of treatment. This rush is debilitating to one’s chances at sustained recovery, especially considering the lengthy duration of addiction. Our plan will have a real focus on sober, structured living. Something that has been imperative in Brian’s recovery. Currently, there is very little funding available for these essential structured, sober environments. The first year of an addict’s recovery is vital to their long-term success and we plan to raise awareness and funds to foster environments for sustained recovery.