Port Morris Wellness Center Workshop
It’s an underrated truth about writing, that to write and read your work is to see a piece of you reflected. It’s like a mirror, occasionally peeking into parts of you that you didn’t know existed. For many people, this process can be deeply therapeutic. To the writers at our Port Morris Wellness Center Workshop – a workshop in a community clinic for methadone maintenance patients undergoing treatment for opiate abuse and dependency -- its become a deeply important step in their recovery.
At first glance, the Port Morris Wellness Center, located nearly underneath the Bruckner Expressway on East 138th St, might not look like a place where writing happens. The area is somewhat industrial, rumbling 8-wheelers as prevalent as yellow cabs are in some neighborhoods. Groups of people mingle on the sidewalk outside the center and pharmacy next door, a scene natural to such places, places often perpendicular to sites of institutionalization and incarceration. Yet inside, in a large room on the 2nd floor, NY Writers Coalition has operated a weekly writing workshop since 2013. It’s become a very close-knit group, many of the writers have been attending since the beginning and they continue to return because of the community; because it's a place to pause, talk, and write; and, for many of them, because of the positive effect that the workshop has had on their recovery. One participant reported that the act of writing and reading his own work is almost an act of checking in with himself. This act of checking in, taking stock, and taking the time to think directly about themselves is something perhaps we don't talk about enough in relation to our work. For so many of us, whether we're writing at a recovery center or a local library, writing gives us a chance to step away from the chaos that surrounds us. The page is a place to reflect, to think about ourselves and our past experiences from a new perspective; it's a place where we can heal.
If you'd like to help us continue our mission of healing, please donate to our Spring Membership Drive. It’s a critical time for our organization and just a small, recurring donation would aid us in sustaining long-term positive impacts at sites like the Port Morris Wellness Center for a long time to come.
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