Substance abuse program helps Soldiers combat drug and alcohol issues

Free counseling, resources and confidentiality available

Story by David Altom / Photos by Staff Sgt. Scott Raymond, Kentucky National Guard Public Affairs

Abuse 01FRANKFORT, Ky. – It’s often said that our Citizen Soldiers and Airmen are our most precious resource.  Indeed, the Kentucky National Guard’s mission readiness is hinged on the physical, mental and emotional condition of its troops.  One of the challenges to that readiness is the threat of substance abuse in the form of drugs and alcohol.

In response to that threat the Army Guard has brought on a full time staff with the expertise, capability and resources to help our Soldiers.  The mission of the Army Substance Abuse Program is to strengthen the overall fitness and effectiveness of the Army´s workforce, to conserve manpower and enhance the combat readiness of Soldiers.

Savannah Lund is the federal alcohol and drug control officer for the Kentucky Army National Guard.  She is a Certified Drug and Alcohol Counselor with certifications in clinical services supervising. 

Working with Lund is Ivan Brown, the substance abuse prevention coordinator for the state of Kentucky.   Among other things, Brown completed graduate work at the University of Louisville’s Kent School of Social Work, specializing in alcohol and drug counseling. 

Click here for more information on the Kentucky Army National Guard’s Substance Abuse Program.

Both Lund and Brown have experience in working with addictions ranging from alcohol and prescription drugs to heroin and other opium-related substances.   When you talk to them, you can immediately tell they are passionate about their work.

“I guess you could say this is a lifetime mission for me,” Lund.  “I’ve been working for fifteen years as a substance abuse therapist, plus I’ve worked with federal and state inmates and the homeless.  My mission is to aid any individual in need.” 

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Ivan Brown is the substance abuse prevention coordinator for the state of Kentucky. Among other things, Brown completed graduate work at the University of Louisville’s Kent School of Social Work, specializing in alcohol and drug counseling. He now dedicates his professional life to helping Kentucky National Guard Soldiers and their families.

The Army Substance Abuse Program is designed to increase individual fitness and overall unit readiness by providing services that emphasize alcohol and other drug abuse deterrence, prevention, education, and rehabilitation.  One of its main goals is to restore to duty those substance-impaired Soldiers who have the potential for continued military Service.

Confidentiality is a key element in the program, says Brown.  “We know if someone is worried about their career, they may not seek help.  We offer a way to get help and rehabilitate their military career.”

If you need help or know someone who does, contact either Lund or Brown at 502-607-1062.

 Look for more postings on substance abuse on the Kentucky National Guard Facebook page. 

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