About Hope Exists Foundation
Hope Exists Mobile Outreach Programs
Our Vision Creating Safer and Healthier Communities
Origins of our program: The Atlantic County Hope One/Hope Exists Mobile Outreach Program was originally replicated from the Morris County Hope One Outreach Unit. Sheriff Eric Scheffler saw the need for direct services for those individuals suffering from mental health and addiction disorders. He expanded their concept and created a unique mobile social service program. The original thought process suggested a growing epidemic among us that robbed individuals of their potential, families of their identity, and the community of its healthy growth. Sheriff Scheffler thoroughly believed that an independent program could exist that would offer to any community member, free of charge, the necessary resources to obtain treatment services by simply asking. This concept was made visibly possible through daily outreach and mobilized throughout each community in the Atlantic County area. To ensure a more rapid response, an outreach hotline was formulated and made available throughout the community to our stakeholders.
What we do: Since its inception, this successful formula has taken shape. It grew to incorporate partnerships within the community that identified with the many opportunities that Hope Exists was creating for individuals. From the beginning, Hope Exists has conducted scheduled weekly mobile outreaches in the community during the morning and evening hours, including weekends. Hope Exists subscribes to a simple philosophy: Prioritize the client, emphasize service delivery. With this concept in mind, Hope Exists has served thousands of individuals to date, and extended its reach beyond just the contractual boundaries of the Atlantic County area. The program has proudly served members in communities of several bordering states.
What first began as identifying and addressing an individual need has now expanded to a community institution. Hope Exists now utilizes a comprehensive and collaborative approach with treatment plans to the specific needs of everyone. Hope Exists recognizes that while treatment is instrumental in initiating the recovery process, the program has worked diligently on removing the service gaps and barriers that at times prevent the individual from succeeding. Hope Exists incorporates supportive transportation services to assure the individual has the opportunity necessary to participate in treatment. Tailored supportive services are paramount, especially for the 90 days following the completion of treatment. Essentially the individualized treatment plan would empower the individual throughout the recovery process. The recovery process itself is a developmental program, presenting the individual with the opportunity to reinvent oneself for the singular purpose of recapturing independence. When successful, the individual can locate the desire and motivation to change not only their lifestyle, but the mindset that enslaves them to substance use dependence.
Our goal: The Hope Exists program’s explicit goal is to continue to adapt and evolve; therefore, the program continues to identify the needs of the community members and provide the necessary resources for empowerment. Sheriff Scheffler has also turned the program focus to the root cause of recidivism and prevention methods to address and reduce this issue. Far too often, the individual returns to the familiar lifestyle that comforts them due to the barriers that plague their successful assimilation into the community. These challenges stem from various systemic issues that manifest themselves onto the individual in both overt and covert forms of stigma and biases. These condemnations result in a negative implication for the individual thinking, leading to isolation, decompensation, and ultimately relapse. Today, Hope Exists occupies a more advanced role in the community that provides the external support to position the individual for success through a series of positive outcomes, which has proven to create a reduction of social barriers.
Our method: Currently, Hope Exists prioritizes a cross-sectional, multi-disciplinary, comprehensive, and collaborative approach with all collateral's in the community, as well as incorporating evidence-based interventions (EBI) to foster client empowerment and individual growth. During client engagements, utilization of the EBI would center on a tailored solution-focused approach that addresses the specific identified needs that are persistent triggers for the client, often contributing to the client’s relapse. Effectively, the applied methodology will consist of serving the client’s basic needs to remove stressful inducements and allow the individual to reframe the thought process and remain focused on recovery.
Examples of the coordination of the services that are addressed or eliminated are system navigation to procuring housing and sober living, financial entitlements and benefits, removal of legal issues, food insecurities, mental health and medical needs, obtaining medications, employment, peer support, family reunification, and fiscal budgeting.
*Community Care Initiative: Addressing food insecurities and related services in individuals and families
* Hope One Mobile Outreach: Connecting people in crisis to treatment
*Veterans Mobile Outreach: Addressing suicide awareness and connecting veterans to the VA and related services
* Hope Exits Mobile Outreach: Addressing substance use disorder and mental health issues
*Law Enforcement Wellness and Resiliency: Will create tremendous positive wellness outcomes by preventing or minimizing negative effects from constant exposure from traumatic incidents
*Peer Support and Community Heath Care Workers: Empowers people to make the best decisions for them and strive towards their goals in their communities
Helping our Veterans