We Are All Diamonds – September 2021

We Are All Diamonds

September is National Recovery Month. This is a time when communities from all over the country come together to celebrate those who are in recovery from drug and/or alcohol abuse, and when we all acknowledge the difficult path one may have taken to find recovery. And, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website, it is also a time to “promote and support new evidence-based treatment and recovery practices, and…the dedication of service providers and community members across the nation who make recovery in all its forms possible.”

On September 4, 2021, the Rage Against Addiction team held our first Shrimp and Bull Roast in Edgewood, Maryland. We had about 200 people in attendance, including Harford County (Maryland) Executive Barry Glassman, who said, “in the light of recovery, we’re all diamonds…we are all gems, no matter what we’ve been through.” Others in attendance were from local businesses; some were family members of those struggling with addiction, and some even lost a loved one to addiction. However, most of our guests were in different stages of recovery and it was a beautiful thing to be surrounded by individuals who overcame some of the toughest times in their lives. We had the honor of speaking with dedicated and compassionate sponsors, and with those who achieved recovery through various forms including medication-assisted treatment (M.A.T.), rehabilitation facilities, sober living houses, and incarceration. “Recovery has given me so many blessings that it’s still unbelievable to me!” said one guest. Another guest was just “thrilled to be alive after so many years of wondering if I’d wake up the next day.”

We proved that anyone could have fun without alcohol. Among the delicious beef, shrimp, pasta, salad, and dessert options that were offered, beverages included soda, tea, juice, water, and coffee. Alcohol was not served, and we still had a ballroom filled with smiling and dancing people! Our sponsors included Harford County Executive Barry Glassman, Addiction Connections Resource, and Marked Improvements, and several area businesses donated amazing items for our silent auction and basket raffles including restaurant and salon gift cards, and admission passes to amusement parks, a Ravens game, and local gardens and golf courses. We also received many self-care products from salons and wellness centers as well as sessions for photography, reiki, and massages. Local individuals donated sports memorabilia and essential oils, and other supporters created various baskets that included coffee, mugs, blankets, candles, and décor. We had a 50/50 raffle where the winner generously donated her earnings back to Rage in memory of her dear brother, and we had a prize wheel that had people excitedly surrounding the table all evening. The music and DJ services were kindly donated by The Perfect Beat, and Coffee Coffee of Bel Air, Maryland provided guests with tasty fall-inspired flavors.

This event was a year in the making, and with the ever-changing Covid regulations, we were nervous we would not be able to make it happen. But through the amazing kindness of our supporters, we pulled off an inspirational evening – one that was perfect for a Labor Day weekend where many get-togethers serve alcohol. We wanted to ensure our guests, particularly those in recovery, had a safe and comfortable opportunity to enjoy delicious food, great company, and fun games without the presence of alcohol.

As we always say: we cannot help others alone. We cannot end the stigma of addiction alone. We cannot continue our mission and programs without others supporting us. We want to extend our most sincere appreciation to EVERYONE who made our Shrimp and Bull Roast the success that it was. WE DO RECOVER!

A note from Wendy logo

“Gratitude is a state of mind in recovery.

 If you ever had a loved one in your life struggle with active addiction, then you know how truly amazing it is to see them find recovery. Witnessing someone get their life back brings a whole new meaning to the word grateful.

 Recovery can mend relationships, heal families, and win back trust. During National Recovery Month, we celebrate those who keep showing up, even when it is hard.

We are so proud of you.  Keep going!”

Rage Talk

Tune in each Wednesday for our podcast in partnership with Rich Bennett of Harford County Living.

 Check out past episodes here: https://harfordcountyliving.com/?s=rage+talk.

Visit Harford County Living on Facebook to get current podcasts each Wednesday morning.

Past topics have included Sibling Grief, The Complicated Grief of An Overdose Death, Recovery Support and Sponsors, and Recovery Information. But there’s more to come!

“This is a series of short clips in an effort to bring awareness to communities about the devastating affects of addiction and to also spread hope about the possibility of recovery.” You will hear from Rage team members Wendy Messner (Founder and Executive Director); Rachel Bongiorno (Daughter’s House Program Manager and Recovery Coach; Mia Ellis (Administrator), and many others who are involved with Rage.

Facebook Fundraiser Creator

Do you know how to create a Facebook Fundraiser for Rage?

Simply use this link: 


If your birthday fundraiser reaches at least $250, you qualify for a free Rage Against Addiction Birthday shirt as our gift of appreciation to you. Someone from our team will be in touch.

Creating a fundraiser is an easy way to get involved while spreading awareness in your own community about the devastating affects of addiction and spreading hope for recovery.

Stacy S. created her fundraiser in memory of her brother who passed away in May 2021 and in support of her other brother who is currently struggling with addiction.

Community Resources

Addiction Connections Resource: A non-profit organization that assists with providing resources and support for addiction treatment and that educates the community about substance abuse disorder. Located in Fallston, MD. Please visit here or call 443-417-7810 for more information. 

Ashley Addiction Treatment: An inpatient treatment center that personalizes clinical programs based on individual need. Located in Havre De Grace, MD. Please visit here or call 800-799-4673 for information about online and in-person meeting services.

Celebrate Recovery: A local support group for those with addictive behaviors. Located in Bel Air, MD and Joppa, MD. ​

  • 5:45pm every Thursday at Mt. Zion Church – 1643 Churchville Road, Bel Air, MD 21015. Contact lheitmuller@zoominternet.net or visit here for more information about meetings.
  • Mountain Christian Church in Joppa, MD: Please register here to join. *Please check out the updated information regarding meeting details.*

​​GRASP (Grief Recovery After a Substance Passing): A local support group for those who have lost someone to addiction. 

  • 7:00pm on the 2nd Wednesday of each month. 
  • Located in the Education Building at Mt. Zion Church – 1643 Churchville Road, Bel Air, MD 21015
  • Contact lisa.craig4@verizon.net for more information.
  • The private national Facebook group is available. Please visit here to ask to join.

The Klein Family Harford Crisis Center: A clinic that provides immediate care for mental health and addiction. Located in Bel Air, MD. Please visit here or call 410-874-0711 for information about online and in-person meeting services.

Loving An Addict: A local support group for family and friends of those in active addiction.  

  • 7:00pm every Saturday. 
  • Located in the Education Building at Mt. Zion Church – 1643 Churchville Road, Bel Air, MD 21015
  • Contact lisa.craig4@verizon.net for more information.

We serve locally but think globally. For counseling, or for addiction, substance abuse disorder, or mental illness treatment, please contact your area’s health department, county government, hospital, or law enforcement agency.