Tag Archives: substance abuse

Photo of the Month: Military Services

From left to right: John Coppola, Co-CEO of InUnity Alliance (formerly the NYS Association of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Providers); and the Child Center Military Services Team: Senior Director Julia Floyd; Edgardo Quinones, LCSW-R, Director of Family Therapy Services and Integrated Care Coordination; and Master Social Worker Xinling Yang, MSW

Veterans Day is a time to remember and honor the service and selflessness of members of our military. It is also a time to honor our commitment to them and their families. That is why this November, the team of our new Military Services initiative traveled to Saratoga Springs for the Ninth Annual Veterans Summit: “Front Sight Focused: Healing the Past for a Successful Future,” sponsored by the Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Providers of New York State (now InUnity Alliance).

“The conference provided a great opportunity to establish meaningful connections with allied services. We connected with various military services, heard inspiring stories of veterans benefiting from these connections, and we are eager to collaborate moving forward,” says Xinling Yang, MSW, who provides therapy to Military Services clients. “This new offering at The Child Center is a chance for us to make a tangible difference in the lives of veterans, their families, and their children, recognizing that family plays a crucial role in veterans’ reintegration into society. It’s an honor to stand by them and ensure they receive the support they truly deserve.”

Thanks to a grant from Mother Cabrini Health Foundation (MCHF), The Child Center is now providing Military Services at each of our three wellness centers. This new service is designed to honor and support those who served our nation, regardless of discharge, by providing specialized outpatient mental health and other services tailored to their unique needs. As with all Child Center programming, we take a whole-family approach: Supporting affected children and other family members is integral to our services.

“It’s wonderful to have the opportunity to shed light on the vital work that we do at The Child Center. To me, it’s fundamentally clear that when an individual makes the selfless decision to serve this country, their commitment is shared by their entire family. It’s a service that extends beyond the individual to their loved ones, and it’s this understanding that has driven us to develop dedicated services for families and veterans.

The experiences of those who serve are varied and complex, and the impacts on their families are equally so. Whether it’s a veteran returning home bearing emotional or physical scars, or a family member grappling with the anxiety and fear of their loved one’s return, we recognize the unique challenges they face.

As the daughter of two people who served in the military, I’ve experienced firsthand the diverse effects their service had as I grew up. It instilled in me a deep understanding of the importance of supporting the family members, particularly the children. It’s essential that we provide them with the resources to understand, cope with, and process their experiences.”

—Julia Floyd, Senior Program Director and longest standing member on the ASAP Veterans Planning Committee 

The Military Services team was excited to spread the word about this new offering to the veterans community and connect with other providers around the state at the conference. And conference attendees were excited to see how The Child Center’s Military Services have made serving the entire family a centerpiece of their approach.

“At the ‘Front Sight Focused’ conference, we gathered to discuss how we could strengthen services for veterans,” says John Coppola, Co-CEO of InUnity Alliance. “The Child Center was a strong voice at the conference and is a leader in efforts to ensure that the entire family receives attention when a veteran is in need. With programs like the NY Certification Board’s Veteran Supported Recovery and The Child Center’s Military Services, there is hope that veterans and their families will get the support and healing they need.”

Our Military Services team sees this new initiative, and especially the emphasis on the family, as an idea whose time has come and the fulfillment of a goal they all have shared.

“When I think about military services it takes me to a larger perspective: the family,” says Edgardo Quinones, LCSW-R, Director of Family Therapy Services and Integrated Care Coordination at The Child Center’s Cohen Family Wellness Center in Woodside, Queens. “When providing services, there is a parent, a sibling, or other relative that is reintegrating into the family system after deployment, and the function and functioning of the family system changes. Many times, the client is not aware of the impact the reentry has on the different members, including the veteran.”

Edgardo knows about this firsthand. “I am the child of a WWII veteran. Since my father’s deployment and discharge from the Army happened many years before I was born, I never connected some of my dad’s behaviors to the military. I just thought he was a strict guy who was setting me and my siblings ‘straight.’ The conference helped me better understand my dad and bring a new perspective into our dynamics and relationship. I am not able to share my insights with him since he has passed on, but I hope it will help me help those families going through similar experiences.”

If you or a loved one served in the military, regardless of discharge, and think you and your family might benefit from these services, please call us at 718-358-8288 or email us at ChildCenterNYintake@childcenterny.org. We stand ready to help you build the future you see for yourself and your family!

Leonard’s Story

Leonard, a client of the substance abuse addiction program at the Jamaica Family Wellness center in Queens

Leonard, a client of the substance abuse addiction program at the Jamaica Family Wellness center in QueensIt may sound ironic, but The Child Center’s focus is larger than just children. Since children don’t grow in isolation, our goal is to help lift up whole communities, providing members of all ages with opportunities to reach their full potential. That’s why many of our programs serve not just youth, but adults, too. Our addiction treatment programs, like the ones at our Jamaica Family Wellness Center, help clients of any age develop the skills and confidence to find lasting recovery and lead healthy, fulfilling lives.


Leonard is a man in his 60s who had been using and selling drugs since 1967. He’d been in and out of jail on drug-related charges for most of his adult life. His drug use and drinking became all-encompassing, causing him to lose contact with his family, including two daughters that he lost to the foster care system. Continue reading

Trump’s Opioid Declaration: Spotlighting the Crisis, But Also the Stigma

Trump declares the opioid epidemic a public health emergency

Trump declares the opioid epidemic a public health emergencyBy Elaine Schechtel
Director, Asian Outreach Substance Abuse Program

Drug overdoses, fueled by opioids, are the leading cause of accidental death for working-age Americans, killing more than 64,000 last year, and the rate of deaths continues to increase. So it’s good, and about time, that our president declared the opioid epidemic a national public health emergency last week. I’m in favor of any move that gets opioid addiction, and substance abuse in general, in the news and on people’s minds. But there were two missed opportunities in the declaration: one, which is rightfully getting a lot of press, is that the announcement did not include any requests for funding; and the other is the way Trump chose to frame the issue of addiction — as a moral failing and weakness of will power, instead of the disease that it is. Continue reading

Recent Blog Posts

Translate »