CAMDEN — Points North Institute, with support from MaineHealth and its member Maine Behavioral Healthcare, will launch the next phase of its Recovery in Maine initiative, a statewide series of free film screenings and community discussions about the ongoing opioid crisis in Maine and across the nation, according to a news release from Points North Institute.

The events to be held across Maine will include screenings of the Netflix documentary “Recovery Boys,” followed by panel discussions with clinicians, individuals in recovery, and interested community members. The film is an intimate look at four men in West Virginia attempting to reinvent their lives and mend broken relationships after years of drug misuse.

The goal of these events is to raise awareness about the impacts of the opioid crisis in Maine, while identifying emerging solutions and available resources available throughout the state. Community members from all backgrounds are invited to listen, learn and participate.

The first series screenings will take place Nov. 29 through Dec. 2 with additional events in early 2019.

“We are losing hundreds of Mainers every year — 418 alone in 2017 — to the epidemic of opioid use disorder and addiction,” said Steve Merz, CEO of Maine Behavioral Healthcare, according to the release. “As Maine’s largest integrated health care delivery system, MaineHealth and its members are investing substantial resources in developing community-based solutions to address prevention, education and treatment of Opioid Use Disorder. Maine Behavioral Healthcare provides intensive treatment at three sites for patients who have acute levels of need. MaineHealth’s behavioral health integration program serves including clinicians who are embedded in All MaineHealth primary care practices provide treatment to patients who are more stable. Together, our practices served over 1,000 Maine people last year. We are proud to support this film festival as a means to facilitate critical conversations in our communities about how best to work together and support one another to save lives.”

“Documentary film screenings can be a powerful tool for building communities and creating a forum for public dialogue,” said Ben Fowlie, executive director of the Points North Institute, according to the release. “We’re thrilled to work with MaineHealth to launch a series that directly confronts the opiate crisis, a critical issue that impact all Mainers.”

The Points North Institute’s Recovery in Maine program kicked off in July with five events across midcoast Maine, followed by a strategic summit meeting with key stakeholders at the organization’s annual Camden International Film Festival. The institute is planning additional screenings and discussions across the state throughout 2019.

The SCHEDULE

• Thursday, Nov. 29, 5:30 p.m., Portland Museum of Art

• Saturday, Dec.1, 1 p.m., Smitty’s Cinema, Biddeford

• Sunday, Dec. 2, 3 p.m., Frontier Cinema, Brunswick, and 6:30 p.m., Smitty’s Cinema, Sanford

For more information, contact Sean Flynn at Points North Institute at [email protected] or 593-6593; or Valerie Compagna at Maine Behavioral Healthcare at [email protected] or 661-6633.

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