Addiction’s Collateral Damage

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 14: Guests joined President Bill Clinton and Kobe Bryant at the grand opening of STEP UP ON VINE on January 14, 2013 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Global Philanthropy Group)
LOS ANGELES, CA – JANUARY 14: Bernadine Fried joined President Bill Clinton and Kobe Bryant at the grand opening of STEP UP ON VINE on January 14, 2013, in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Global Philanthropy Group)

The 12 Angels Evergreen Fund, a 501c3 nonprofit charity, uses the tools of community economic development such as mentorship, micro-lending, grants and low-interest loans to support organizations that prevent and treat addictive disorders.

Addiction and other mental health disorders cause two types of damage. The first type of injury is to the individuals that addictively use drugs and alcohol. Another hardship is the “collateral damage” caused by addiction. Collateral damage is a general term for deaths, injuries, or other damage inflicted on an unintended target.

Many people who are addicted believe that they are only harming themselves. Any friend or family member of an addict would certainly disagree with this statement. Emergency room doctors treat approximately five million drug-related visits a year according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

The National Coalition for the homeless estimate that 64% abuse alcohol, drugs or both. The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse published a report in 2010 stating that approximately 65% of inmates meet the criteria for substance dependence.

Instead of going on describing more examples of the collateral damage caused by addiction, maybe we can summarize with $700 Billion of total economic damage caused by addiction in the US on an annual basis. How big is $700 Billion? We’ve heard much this election season how China and other countries are taking jobs and opportunities from the US. The US trade deficit with China in 2015 was roughly $365 billion.

As Albert Einstein┬ásaid, “In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.” The 12 Angels with your help and support find the opportunities to make a difference for individuals, their family and friends, and our society that is suffering the consequences caused by addiction and other mental health disorders. Join us.

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