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
"WashingtonCo Sheriff" Anonymous Text-a-Tip
Recovery Coach Program
RecoveryCorps Recovery Coach Program
NEW! Maine Alliance for Recovery Coaching (Maine-ARC)
Downeast Project HOPE
NEW! Down East Recovery Resource Guide (2019-2020 edition)  Download PDF here
Downeast Treatment Center and the Hub and Spokes Treatment Model
Downeast MAT Expansion Project

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

  • Machias Family Pharmacy
    194 Main Street, Machias; (207) 255-8880

  • 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 on theThursday of each month at the DownEast Recovery Support Center at 4 Free St in Machias. 

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

"WashingtonCo Sheriff" Anonymous Text-a-Tip Service

Mobile App for Anonymous Reporting of Illegal Substance Use

The Washington County Sheriff’s Office and Healthy Acadia have partnered to launch a new mobile app, “WashingtonCo Sheriff,” which allows residents of Washington County to anonymously notify law enforcement about underage drinking and illegal drug use.  

Users of “WashingtonCo Sheriff” can submit anonymous tips directly from their smartphone to provide information about underage drinking or illegal drug use in progress or planned to occur via an anonymous text. Tipsters are encouraged to provide specifics about the location of the violation and the people involved if possible - the tipster’s name and telephone number will remain completely anonymous.


The  “WashingtonCo Sheriff” app is available as a free download for both iPhone and Android users. 

Click here to download, "WashingtonCo Sheriff" for Android users from the Google Play Store.  

Click here to download, "WashingtonCo Sheriff" from the iTunes App Store. 

Residents in Washington County without a smartphone may still send an anonymous tip via text message to the Washington County Sheriff’s Office by texting the keyword WCSO and their message/tip to 847411 (tip411) from their cell phone. 

Those without access to a cell phone may submit an anonymous tip online by clicking here.


Though “WashingtonCo Sheriff” focuses on underage drinking and substance use, it may be used to report any kind of criminal or unsafe (non-emergency) activity.

IMPORTANT: This service is not a substitute for 911 and should never be used for emergencies or immediately life-threatening situations. In some cases, tip submissions may not be received until the following day. In case of emergency, dial 911.

For tip submissions requiring an immediate response, please contact the Washington County Sheriff’s Office at 207-255-4422 or your local police department.


Developed by tip411, “WashingtonCo Sheriff” puts a powerful substance use prevention tool into the hands of community members of all ages. The “WashingtonCo Sheriff,” and tip411 anonymous text-a-tip system are 100% anonymous, as the technology removes all identifying information before police see the tips and there is no way to identify the sender.

Funding to support the launch of the “WashingtonCo Sheriff” app from Maine Prevention Services, an initiative through the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention working across the state to impact tobacco, substance use, and obesity.

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.


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.


Click here to complete the pre-application questionnaire.

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.

NEW! Maine Alliance for Recovery Coaching (Maine-ARC)

On July 1, 2019, Healthy Acadia, with support from Maine’s Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services (SAMHS), launched the Maine Alliance for Recovery Coaching (Maine-ARC) to support volunteer-driven, community recovery coaching throughout Hancock, Piscataquis, Somerset,Waldo and Washington counties. Through Maine-ARC, Healthy Acadia and partners will collaborate with health care and treatment centers, jails, drug courts, pre-release sites, social service and law enforcement agencies, and other community partners across the five counties to implement highly effective, community-based recovery coaching systems to support those seeking recovery from substance use disorders, with an emphasis on opioid use disorders. Maine-ARC partners will work together to develop effective, far reaching, volunteer-based peer recovery coaching programs that promise to build healthier communities and help people succeed on their recovery journeys. 

Healthy Acadia will coordinate recovery coaching services in Hancock and Washington counties, and will contract with organizations in Piscataquis, Somerset and Waldo counties through an application process to lead recovery coach coordination in their respective counties. Healthy Acadia, with funding support from SAMHS, will provide a sub-award to each sub-recipient organization to hire a Recovery Coach Site Coordinator, to engage volunteers, and to provide recovery coaching services. Recovery Coach Site Coordinators will receive training, support, and oversight from Healthy Acadia, and will recruit, supervise, and coordinate volunteer recovery coaches, develop county-wide recovery coaching referral and engagement protocols, and perform regular data assessments to ensure program quality and fidelity.

Community organizations in Piscataquis, Somerset and Waldo counties that serve individuals with substance use disorders and that are interested in leading county-wide recovery coach coordination are encouraged to complete the Maine Alliance for Recovery Coaching (Maine-ARC) Recovery Coach Coordination Application to Provide County Services (fillable PDF). Please submit the completed application, along with all required attachments, to: by no later than 5:00pm on July 24, 2019.

For more information about the Maine-ARC program or the application process, contact Maine-ARC Co-Directors Denise Black (; 207.667.7171) or Terri Woodruff (; 207.255.3741).

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.


The DownEast Treatment Center is accepting referrals through the AMHC Access Center

Treatment is confidential and open to anyone who meets admission criteria. The DownEast Treatment Center accepts 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 


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.

The Downeast MAT Expansion Project is a collaborative effort of Healthy Acadia, health care providers, and the Downeast Substance Treatment Network and Downeast Substance Use Response Coalition; groups that include integrated health systems, hospitals, clinics, community-based organizations, law enforcement, community recovery organizations and representatives, faith-based organizations, and other local coalitions.

The primary goals of the Project include expanding access to high quality medication-assisted treatment (MAT) services by reducing treatment barriers, and enhancing MAT services for individuals seeking treatment by increasing the number of providers with treatment expertise through training and implementation of best management practices.

The new Downeast Treatment Center (406 State Street, Ellsworth) will support individual stabilization and initiation of intensive MAT services and will work in partnership with providers across Hancock and Washington counties to provide ongoing care. 

Key components of the Project also include leveraging Healthy Acadia’s growing volunteer peer recovery coach system in the two counties in order to improve access to, and retention in, MAT services and to support long-term recovery; developing and implementing pilot programs to increase access to MAT for incarcerated individuals and to support emergency department rapid screening and MAT access; and expanding tobacco cessation services: studies have shown that patients in treatment for drug/alcohol use who quit using tobacco are more likely to stay drug/alcohol free than those who continue to smoke.

To learn more about the MAT Expansion Project, email Penny Guisinger at or call 255-3741.

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.

The DownEast Treatment Center is accepting referrals through the AMHC Access Center

To schedule an appointment, call:


Clinic Hours:  

Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 

8am to 5pm