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Shannon Smith, Interim Executive Director

A Letter from Our Interim Executive Director

To Our Clients and Community,

Every new year brings with it the promise of change. As we enter 2023, Sound Pathways is welcoming change as we continue to evolve to best serve our community.

After four years with Sound Pathways, I am honored to step into the role of Interim Executive Director. I have worked in almost every aspect of this organization from Parent Child Assistance Program (PCAP) Case Manager to Syringe Services Program Manager, and Amerigroup Program Manager…

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Drug and alcohol addiction is relentless. So are we. For more than 50 years, Sound Pathways has worked diligently to keep families together.

We have been at the forefront of supporting at-risk individuals facing alcohol and substance use disorders in Snohomish County. While we focus primarily on supporting pregnant and parenting women, we have expanded our services to assist men with similar alcohol and substance use disorders throughout the county.

Working to provide wrap-around social services in this close-knit community has taught us many things.

What We Have Learned.

We know that between 5,000 – 10,000 Snohomish County residents suffer from opioid use disorder. While it is estimated that between 35,000 – 80,000 county residents misuse opioids.

We understand that substance use disorders take many forms. We know addiction affects every gender, identity, race, color, religion, and age. A person’s marital status, income, sexual orientation, zip code, or profession are not solely an indication of their likelihood to abuse alcohol or drugs. There simply is no typical substance use disorder story.

We also know that alcoholism and addiction radically harm families. These diseases can tear them apart emotionally and literally. The long-term effects of drug and alcohol addiction often keep families from ever fully healing.

We work tirelessly to combat these diseases in order to help people regain their health and their self-reliance, to keep families safe and together, and to create a stronger community for all.

Why Our Work Matters.

50,000
People in the United States

In 2019, nearly 50,000 people in the United States died from opioid-involved overdoses.

700
Individuals Die Each Year

Approximately 700 individuals die each year from an opioid overdose in our state with 180 (25%) of those deaths occurring in Snohomish County.

#1
Leading Cause of Accidental Deaths

Opioid overdose deaths are now the leading cause of accidental deaths in almost every part of Washington State.

1,400
Emergency Room Visits

1,400 emergency room visits are caused by substance misuse each year in Snohomish County.

42,600
People in Snohomish Co.

Drug use isn’t always illegal. Nine million Americans misuse prescriptions drugs every year, 42,600 of those people live in Snohomish County.

105
Unsheltered Households

At any time, Snohomish County has on average 105 homeless families with children and only 70 bed spaces allocated for households with children.

Our Wrap Around Social Services

We serve and support more than 5,000 people each year. As a result, hundreds of families have been reunited or have been spared the trauma of separation.

Sound Pathways Programs & Services

Over several decades, our core programs have been refined to effectively support people struggling with the generational cycles of trauma, addiction, and abuse. Our focus is to help people find safe pathways to recovery so that they can become healthy and self-reliant.

Sound Pathways serves people seeking recovery from substance use disorders who are low-income, need mental health support, are currently homeless, or are part of other underserved populations in Snohomish County. All services are free to eligible clients.

Your donation can help us change lives and strengthen our community.

Donate TODAY

Client Testimonials

……Until just recently, I had an active client case load. As I move into this new leadership role, I will take my years of frontline experience with me as a guide and also as a reminder of the tremendous work in action by the Sound Pathways team.

I found my professional home at Sound Pathways because of the colleagues I stand side by side with, the community who generously supports and collaborates with us, and the clients who energize me every day. I know in my very bones that Sound Pathways is a force of hope and healing for the people we serve.

Whether it’s the start of a new year or the middle of one, every day we recommit to create a safe and supportive place for our clients to become self-reliant, sober, and successful.

As the new year begins, substance misuse numbers continue to rise, and our clients continue to face mounting barriers to housing, healthcare and other critical resources. We know it can be exhausting and frustrating to find much needed services, so we are implementing three new approaches to set our clients up for success. To bolster our programs’ effectiveness, we are:

Cross training staff so that they can seamlessly assist our clients across multiple programs.

Ensuring clients connect with outside resources by offering rides to appointments and more thorough follow through, when appropriate.

Partnering with healthcare providers to bring them to clients wherever they may be living.

Our work in supporting at-risk families and individuals facing alcohol and substance use disorders is both practical and personal. My own lived experience with addiction has always guided me at Sound Pathways and will continue to do so in my new role. When I was using, I did not feel worthy of being healthy. But the moment that feeling of worthiness was instilled in me, my life path changed. I know that together, as an organization and a community, we can help others change their life paths.

It is my honor to lead this incredible organization and to continue to serve this vibrant community. I am grateful to walk with our clients on their paths to recovery.

With hope and joy for the new year,

Shannon Smith
Interim Executive Director

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