Real Talk Program Expands Nationwide with Miss America Organization and Advanced Recovery Systems Partnership

The educational program that is designed to discuss the dangers of substance use, addiction, and address mental health needs is preparing for state title holders to present to schools throughout America

Miss America Organization and Advanced Recovery Systems announce partnership to expand Real Talk’s educational ambassador program nationwide. The program has served the Florida community since 2016 and has impacted over 15k students since its founding.

“It’s no secret that I dedicated my role as Miss America to educating about prescription drug safety and substance use disorders, as well as fighting the opioid epidemic, but making lasting change takes more than just one person,” said Camille Schrier, Miss America 2020. “I am THRILLED by the national partnership between the Miss America Organization and Advanced Recovery Systems which will empower titleholders across the country to educate on these issues nationwide, and maximize our impact in creating safer, drug-free communities.”

Real Talk is a comprehensive, educational program designed for high school and college students that discusses the dangers of drugs and alcohol, particularly in relation to how these behaviors can result in substance abuse and addiction. Real Talk ambassadors encourage students to ask questions about substance abuse, share their experiences without guilt or fear, and embrace healthy habits for their futures. Ambassadors also use their voice through social media campaigns, blogging and creating videos about addiction and mental health.

Now in its fifth year, Advanced Recovery Systems and The Miss America Organization are partnering to expand Real Talk nationwide. Each state titleholder is encouraged to apply to participate in the program in their state. There currently are 20+ state holders signed up to participate in the Real Talk 2020 Program.

“To date, our Real Talk program has reached over 16,000 high school students, colleges, and community organizations through open, honest discussions about substance abuse and addiction,” said Allison Walsh, Vice President, Business Development of Advanced Recovery Systems. “While 2020 has been a year of uncertainty, we’re proud of the way we pivoted to accommodate an emerging public health crisis and rapidly-changing environment to expand our Real Talk program into a virtual offering. We are thrilled to work with over 25 Real Talk Brand Ambassadors and now we are partnering with the Miss America Organization to reach even more communities nationwide. With teen mental health being a top priority, we are dedicated to being part of the solution.”

The curriculum for the Real Talk program has been adapted from the Alcohol Literacy Challenge, which has revolutionized classroom-based prevention efforts by changing students’ beliefs about the effects of alcohol through cutting-edge brain science and media literacy education. The Alcohol Literacy Challenge curricula is included in the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)’s National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices.

To learn more about Real Talk, please visit http://www.therecoveryvillage.com/real-talk or contact Allison Walsh at awalsh@advancedrecoverysystems.com.

About Advanced Recovery Systems
Advanced Recovery Systems is an integrated behavioral health care management company dedicated to the treatment of addiction, substance abuse and mental health conditions. The Advanced Recovery Systems network of treatment centers includes The Recovery Village Umatilla (Umatilla, Florida), The Recovery Village at Palmer Lake (Palmer Lake, Colorado), The Recovery Village Ridgefield (Ridgefield, Washington), The Recovery Village Columbus (Groveport, Ohio), Orlando Recovery Center (Orlando, Florida), Next Generation Village (Sebring, Florida), and The IAFF Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery (Upper Marlboro, Maryland). Advanced Recovery Systems also manages three locations of Next Step Village (Maitland, Umatilla and Eustis, Florida), recovery residences providing supportive, transitional living opportunities. For more information, visit http://www.AdvancedRecoverySystems.com.