Partnership Carson City is adding yoga and other therapeutic exercise classes as part of an expanded mission.
“This year one of our goals is alternative pain management, working with doctors and people who want to stay pain free,” said Hannah McDonald, executive director, Partnership Carson City.
The non-profit plans in the next month to start hosting a yoga class at its new office in Frontier Plaza. The class will be led by instructors from Community Yogi, a Reno-based business that travels to teach yoga at different locations.
Pain management is widely considered at the core of the crisis in opioid abuse, which has been fueled by prescriptions for all kinds of pain.
The expanded focus fits in with Partnership Carson City’s core mission. The non-profit is one of 11 coalitions in the state working on substance abuse prevention.
“It’s not unknown to us that people don’t understand what we do,” said McDonald. “It is ever changing with the needs of community, but our No. 1 goal is to create a healthy community.”
The organization started 21 years ago to deal with methamphetamine addiction in the community, said McDonald.
That broadened to include other substances, such as heroin and alcohol, and finally into a focus on mental wellness as well.
The organization’s No. 1 task in doing that is working with other local non-profits on grant funding.
“That is the biggest chunk of my time,” said McDonald.
Partnership Carson City’s budget is roughly $1 million annually, all from grants.
“We manage eight to 10 grants and the money goes to over 20 agencies and programs,” said McDonald.
The idea is Partnership Carson City oversees and manages the grants so other organizations, such as Ron Wood Family Resource Center, can focus on providing services.
The organization also meets quarterly with law enforcement to determine unmet needs in the community, such as parenting classes, and hosts a monthly meeting of 45 agencies called the Community Action Agency Network.
But what the non-profit is probably best known for, said McDonald, is its prescription drug roundups held in April and October when people can bring unused prescriptions and related items to participating grocery stores for safe disposal.
At the last roundup, Partnership Carson City collected 128 pounds in needles and 490 pounds in medications.
“A few years ago we took in 700 pounds (in medications), but we average 200 pounds in needles and 450 pounds in pills or liquids,” said McDonald.
McDonald said there are more needs in the community that need tackling, which means Partnership Carson City will continue to evolve.
“There is a very serious crisis of not having enough facilities for people addicted to substances, either short-term or long-term facilities. Prescription drug (abuse) of all kinds are continuously rising,” she said. “If you come back in a year we could be doing something totally different.”