Substance Prevention and Recovery

Healthy Acadia is dedicated to supporting people of all ages to live lives free of substance misuse and substance use disorder, and supporting individuals throughout their recovery journey. 

We engage in multiple initiatives to prevent substance misuse, support recovery, and to promote healthy choices, including:

Drug Free Communities Coalition 
Alcohol Misuse Prevention
Prescription Drug Misuse Prevention
Safe Drug Disposal
Youth Marijuana Use Prevention
Washington County Community Action Team
Law Enforcement Tip Line
Recovery Coach Program
NEW! RecoveryCorps Recovery Coach Program
Downeast Project HOPE
NEW! Down East Recovery Resource Guide (2018 edition)  Download PDF
Downeast Treatment Center and the Hub and Spokes Treatment Model

Drug Free Communities Coalition

Heathy Acadia's Hancock County Drug Free Communities (DFC) Coalition is an alliance of community members and local organizations who are dedicated to empowering youth and reducing underage use of alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs across Hancock County. Youth substance use and abuse is a serious concern in our communities, and the DFC Coalition is working on a variety of initiatives to prevent substance abuse and to help children and youth thrive.

Through the DFC program, Healthy Acadia supports schools, organizations and programs to carry out community-level change. As a result, we all work together toward a common goal of building a safe, healthy, and drug-free Hancock County. If you are interested in becoming involved in this Coalition, please contact Tara Young at 667-7171 or

The Drug Free Communities Support Program is a federal grant funded through the Office of National Drug Control Policy and Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Alcohol Misuse Prevention

Responsible Beverage Server & Seller Trainings:
Healthy Acadia hosts Responsible Beverage Server & Seller (RBS) Trainings for alcohol retail establishments, restaurants and bars across Hancock and Washington counties. The trainings provide staff with knowledge to better prevent violations of liquor laws and serve alcohol safely, with an emphasis on preventing underage and high-risk drinking.

Participants will learn how to ensure that safe business practices are implemented within the workplace. Healthy Acadia staff will walk participants through numerous possible scenarios, examine fake identification cards, reviews excerpts from the Maine liquor laws, and discusses all the factors that go into making alcohol handling a safe business. For information about upcoming trainings, or to schedule a training for your employees, in Hancock County, email Tara or call 667-7171.  In Washington County, email Terri  or call 255-3741.

Alcohol helps people assess their alcohol consumption patterns to determine if their drinking is likely to be harming their health or increasing their risk for future harm. Through education and referral, the site provides opportunities to those whose drinking is harmful or hazardous to take positive action, and informs all adults who consume alcohol about guidelines and caveats for lower-risk drinking. For more information, contact Tara at (Hancock County) or Terri at (Washington County).

Prescription Drug Misuse Prevention

Prescription drug abuse or misuse occurs when a medication is not used according to a doctor’s directions, is taken by someone other than for whom it was prescribed, or taken for reasons or in dosages other than as prescribed.

Prescription drug abuse is rampant across the nation, as well as in Maine. In Maine, more people die annually from prescription drug overdoses than car accidents. The abuse and misuse of prescription pain medications can result in serious consequences including addiction, negative health effects, drug-related crime, death, and the resounding impact on the lives of users and their families.

Healthy Acadia is committed to coordinating efforts to address prescription drug misuse across the region, including increasing awareness about the epidemic, sharing information about how community members can make a difference, and providing interventions to reduce prescription drug misuse.

Our work covers several areas, including:

  • Increasing awareness around prescription drug misuse
  • Increasing awareness about safe storage and disposal of prescription drugs
  • Providing community-based interventions to reduce the impact and availability of prescription drugs

Maine Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services

U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Substance Abuse Trends in Maine, State Epidemiological Profile, 2012

Safe Medicine Disposal for ME Program

Maine’s Prescription Monitoring Program

For more information, contact:

In Hancock County, email Tara; or call 667-7171;

In Washington County, email Terri or call 255-3741 

Safe Drug Disposal

Safe and proper disposal of prescription drugs and over-the-counter medications helps to keep our communities healthier, cleaner, and safer. Safe disposal: 

  • reduces the potential for drug misuse & abuse, and drug diversion
  • protects our environment, including our water supply.

Since 2013, Healthy Acadia has worked in partnership Maine Prevention Services, Drug Free Communities, local police departments, Sheriff's Offices and pharmacies to install and maintain prescription drop boxes throughout Hancock and Washington counties.

Drop boxes are now available for safe, anonymous disposal of prescription drugs* at these locations:

  • Bar Harbor Police Department
    37 Firefly Lane, Bar Harbor; (207) 288-3391
  • Bucksport Police Department
    89 Franklin Street, Bucksport; (207) 469-7951
  • Calais Police Department
    312 North Street, Calais; (207) 454-2751
  • Eastport Police Department
    28 Water Street, Eastport; (207) 853-4553

  • Ellsworth Police Department
    1 City Hall Plaza, Ellsworth; (207) 667-2168
  • Hancock County Sheriff's Office
    50 State Street, Suite 10, Ellsworth; (207) 667-7575

  • Milbridge Pharmacy
    11 Main Street, Milbridge; (207) 546-2304

  • Mount Desert Police Department
    21 Sea Street, Northeast Harbor; (207) 276-5111
  • Passamaquoddy Tribe of Indian Township Police Department
    443 US 1, Princeton; (207) 796-5296

  • Passamaquoddy Tribe of Pleasant Point Police Department
    100 County Rd, Perry; (207) 853-6100

  • Southwest Harbor Police Department
    26 Village Green Way, Southwest Harbor; (207) 244-7911
  • Washington County Sheriff Department
    47 Court Street, Machias; (207) 255-3434

Please contact your preferred drop box location for operating hours.

*Sorry, NO syringes, liquids, medical devices, needles, broken glass, or sharps of any kind can be accepted through drop boxes.  Check out our fact sheet or contact your healthcare provider or local medical center for information regarding proper disposal of these items.

If I can't reach a drop box?

Drop boxes are the best and safest way to dispose of medications. However, if that is not possible, here are some alternative guidelines:

  • Follow medication disposal instructions on the label if given, including flushing instructions for some medications
  • DO NOT pour medications down a drain
  • Dissolve solid medications with water in a resealable plastic bag
  • Add an undesirable substance such as kitty litter, sawdust, or coffee grounds to the plastic bag with the medications to help prevent children or animals from eating, seal the bag, and throw it away in the trash
  • Remember to remove all personal information from the medication container before disposing of them.

For more information about safe drug disposal options, download this flyer from the U.S. Food & Drug Administration.

For more information, contact:

In Hancock County: Tara at 667-7171 or

In Washington County: Terri at 255-3741 or

Safe Disposal of Needles and Syringes

The Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) allows the disposal of used needles and syringes in your regular garbage if you utilize a rigid plastic laundry detergent container. Prepare a sharps container from an empty and clean, rigid plastic laundry detergent container. Write ‘Do Not Recycle’ on outside of container. Make sure you keep the cap to seal the container. Other plastic containers such as dish detergent and bleach bottles are too thin and are not safe for use as a sharps container.


Fact Sheet: Guidelines for Disposal of Needles and Syringes

For more information about safe disposal of needles and syringes, please visit or call Michael Parker, Maine DEP Biomedical Waste Program, (207) 287-7704.


Youth Marijuana Use Prevention

Marijuana use has a number of negative effects on health, which can include: exposure to known carcinogens (marijuana smoke contains up to 70 percent more carcinogenic hydrocarbons than tobacco smoke), impaired ability to create new memories, episodes of acute psychosis (if a large dose is ingested), and increased risk of chronic cough and bronchitis.

Frequent and prolonged marijuana use can result in addiction. It is estimated that 1 in 6 people who start using in their teens become dependent. Additionally, marijuana use can lead to exposure to and use of other illicit drugs.

Marijuana use has significant effects on teens and young adults. Marijuana use impairs the ability of a person to form new memories and to shift focus. It also disrupts balance and coordination. As a result, learning, doing complicated tasks, participating in athletics, driving, and other activities are affected. The negative effects on attention, memory and learning can continue for days or even weeks after the acute effects wear off. Therefore, young people who use marijuana frequently may experience reduced functioning in attention, memory and learning most or all of the time. This can lead to lower grades, dropping out of school, and impaired social development.

Healthy Acadia works to prevent youth marijuana use through increased education about the risks, and through interventions to reduce use.

Strategies include:

  • Coordinating parent educational meetings to provide information about the effects of marijuana use on teens and young adults.
  • Disseminating materials on the effects of youth marijuana use through a variety of channels, including conventional and electronic media.
  • Providing educational opportunities for teachers and counselors about marijuana research findings.

For more information, contact:

In Hancock County: email Tara or Denise; or call 667-7171

In Washington County: email Terri or call 255-3741

Washington County Community Action Team

The Community Action Team was formed in 2016 and consists of groups of people coming together to discuss solutions and address the needs of communities around the Opioid Epidemic in Washington County.

Who should attend?

Parents, Grandparents, Teachers, Students, Community Members, anyone interested in making a difference! Meetings are held the third Wednesday of the month at the Healthy Acadia office 121 Court Street, Machias.

For more information, contact: Terri Woodruff at or 255-3741.

Law Enforcement Tip Line

We are currently working with law enforcement agencies across Hancock and Washington Counties to establish anonymous, text-a-tip applications in each county, which are tentatively scheduled to go live in the fall of 2018. Please stay tuned for additional information.  

Recovery Coach Program

Recovery coaching is a unique and innovative peer mentoring program which utilizes trained Recovery Coaches to guide and mentor others through their own recovery process. A Recovery Coach is anyone interested in promoting recovery by removing barriers and obstacles to recovery by serving as a personal guide and mentor for people seeking or in recovery.

Recovery coaches are individuals who may be in established recovery, a friend or family member of someone in recovery, or a recovery ally.

A Recovery Coach is a leader, a mentor, a partner, a spiritual guide and a cheerleader, helping people build a life that is meaningful and enjoyable for them.

A Recovery Coach may serve as:

- Motivator and Cheerleader

- Mentor and guide

- Truth-Teller

- Role Model

- Problem Solver

- Resource Broker

- Advocate

- Community Organizer

- Lifestyle Consultant

- Ally and Confidant

A Recovery Coach does NOT serve as-

- Sponsor

- Counselor

- Nurse/doctor

- Clergy Person

- Lawyer

- Banker

Recovery coaches must complete the 30-hour Recovery Coach Academy,  a recovery coach training program developed by Connecticut Community for Addiction Recovery (CCAR).  Healthy Acadia's Denise Black and Terri Woodruff, graduates of CCAR's Recovery Coach Academy and Training of the Trainers Program offer the training as a 4-day workshop 2-3 times per year.  In the workshop, participants:

  • Explore Recovery Coach role and functions
  • Review the components, core values and guiding principles of recovery
  • Build skills to enhance relationships
  • Explore many dimensions of recovery of recovery and recovery coaching
  • Discover attitudes about self disclosure and sharing your story
  • Understand the stages of recovery
  • Review the stages of change and their applications
  • Increase their awareness of culture, power and privilege
  • Explore ethical and boundaries issues
  • Experience recovery wellness planning

For more information about our Recovery Coach Academy, contact Denise at 667-7171 or or Terri at 255-3741 or, or visit Check our Calendar or What's New! page for upcoming Recovery Coach Academy session.


NEW! RecoveryCorps Recovery Coach Program

Maine RecoveryCorps, an AmeriCorps program housed at Healthy Acadia, expands recovery coaching in Maine by training and supporting individuals to become recovery coaches through the structure of AmeriCorps, including high-quality professional training, service benefits, and ongoing programmatic support. Individuals become trained to serve as recovery coaches at a full-time or part-time level for a year or more.

The Maine RecoveryCorps AmeriCorps program is focused on addressing the substance use disorder crisis in Maine, with an emphasis on opioid use disorders. The Maine Commission for Community Service, the state agency that administers AmeriCorps funds, received funding from the Corporation for National & Community Service to support the development of an AmeriCorps program addressing the opioid crisis in Maine. In January 2017, representatives from 27 nonprofit organizations and law enforcement agencies met and identified recovery coaching as the focus for an AmeriCorps program. Subsequently, Healthy Acadia was asked to take on the lead role to guide and administer the program. In July 2018, we were awarded the grant to launch Maine RecoveryCorps by the Corporation for National and Community Service, through a competitive national process.

Organizations throughout Aroostook, Hancock, Kennebec, Knox, Penobscot, Piscataquis, Waldo, and Washington counties serve as host sites for one or more RecoveryCorps AmeriCorps coaches who support clients within the service area of the host site. Host sites include healthcare sites, law enforcement sites, correctional facilities, community organizations, and others. Through their service, RecoveryCorps coaches support individuals at various points along on the recovery path and in various settings, including in the community, at healthcare sites, in jail, recently released, and more.

Beginning mid-November 2018, the following partner organizations will serve as host sites for one or more RecoveryCorps Recovery Coaches:


Acadia Family Center (Hancock County)

Aroostook Community Action Program (Aroostook County)

AMHC (Aroostook, Washington, Hancock counties)

Bucksport Regional Health Center (Hancock County)

Downeast Treatment Center (AMHC, Hancock County)

Health Equity Alliance (Penobscot, Washington and Aroostook counties)

Healthy Acadia (Washington and Hancock counties)

Maine Coastal Regional Reentry Center (Waldo County)

Mid Coast Recovery Coalition (Knox County)

Penobscot Community Health Care (Penobscot County)

Regional Medical Center at Lubec (Washington County)

Together Place (Penobscot County)

Wabanaki Health and Wellness (Penobscot County)

Waldo County Sheriff’s Office (Waldo County)

Downeast Project HOPE

Downeast Project Hope was launched in Ellsworth on September 30, 2016 and is in the process of expanding to Washington County to include Washington County Sheriff’s Office, and Baileyville and Pleasant Point Police Departments. The goal of Downeast Project HOPE is to place people suffering from heroin and opiate addiction, as well as other substance use disorders, into high quality treatment and rehabilitation programs.

Downeast Project HOPE consists of the following elements:

Law Enforcement Training Public Education and Outreach 

Drug Turn-in

Treatment and Assistance 

Doweast Project HOPE “Angels” 

Treatment Follow-Up


To learn more about Project HOPE, and how you can help, click here.

The Downeast Treatment Center and the Hub and Spokes Treatment Model

AMHC’s DownEast Treatment Center (406 State Street, Suite 2, Ellsworth, Maine) which opened in the summer of 2018,  is a treatment hub offering comprehensive MAT services, with integrated behavioral health and medication management for the treatment of substance use conditions.

Medication assisted treatment (MAT) is an evidence-based treatment approach utilizing medication and counseling to treat substance use conditions and achieve sustained recovery. 

DownEast Treatment Center is the hub of a "hub and spoke" treatment model developed by the DownEast Substance Treatment Network partners. The spokes are community-based primary care providers and counselors who will provide MAT to patients once the initial hub treatment is completed and recovery is underway.

In MAT, one can expect to:

  • Receive a comprehensive assessment to determine appropriate treatment.
  • Once admitted into the program, initially meet 3 times per week for behavioral health group counseling and with a medical provider for medication management.
  • Transition from 3 times weekly, to twice weekly, to once weekly, etc. as they are successful during meetings and drug screens.
  • Have the opportunity to meet with a certified recovery coach who can provide additional encouragement and support, at no cost to the individual.
  • Transition to a primary care provider who will prescribe medication, and participate in regular outpatient substance use counseling.
  • If experiencing difficulty in community MAT services, may be referred back to DownEast Treatment Center for more intensive services.


Treatment is confidential and open to anyone who meets admission criteria.

We accept MaineCare, private insurance, and self-payment. Grant funding is available for qualifying individuals to reduce self-pay fees.

 Call AMHC’s 

Access Center at: 1-800-244-6431 

to schedule an appointment.

Clinic Hours: 

Monday, Wednesday and Friday

8am to 5pm 


NEW! Hub and Spokes Handbook for Providers


The DownEast Treatment Center is made possible by numerous community partners, the Health Resources and Services Administration, Maine Health Access Foundation, and the Stephen & Tabitha King Foundation, along with key organizational support from: AMHC, Blue Hill Memorial Hospital, Bucksport Regional Health Center, Maine Coast Momorial Hospital, MDI Hospital and Health Centers, and Healthy Acadia.

Our communities encourage and support lifestyles free from substance abuse. Adults model responsible behaviors, and families learn the skills needed to raise strong, resilient, healthy children.
Healthy Acadia works with community partners to prevent underage drinking and alcohol misuse.