Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Being a Parent in Recovery – Dawn Farm Education Series

November 26, 2019 @ 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

Location: St. Joseph Mercy Michigan Heart and Vascular Institute auditorium, 5325 Elliott Drive, Ypsilanti Michigan 48197. Park in parking area “M”.

Please click here to access the main Education Series information page.

The entire family unit is profoundly affected by the active addiction of a parent, often through generations. The challenges and healing that go along with recovery of a family member also exert a profound influence in the immediate family and in future generations. During the active addiction of a parent, children may assume unhealthy roles and behaviors, and parents in early recovery may need to develop new parenting knowledge, skills and confidence to prepare them to help their children, rebuild damaged relationships and reestablish trust. Parenting can be challenging under any circumstances; parents in recovery from substance use disorders face additional challenges in balancing the work of recovery with the responsibilities of parenting, and with healing damages accrued during active addiction. Working a strong program of recovery may be the first and most important parenting skill required; parents in recovery can also learn and adopt parenting skills that fit their own parenting style and will help them and their families along their personal and family recovery journeys. This presentation will discuss the importance of maintaining a strong recovery program while parenting; explore ‘parenting skills 2.0″ that can help recovering people to be strong, capable parents; and include a panel discussion by parents in recovery from substance use disorders.


Presentation Slides


Positive Discipline

About the presenters:

Mary Jo Desprez, MA 

Mary Jo Desprez is a native of Ann Arbor, Michigan. She received her BA (1985) and MA (1987) from Michigan State University. She has worked in the field of college health/wellness for 28+ years. As Director of Wolverine Wellness at University Health Service she leads a team of professionals that provide primary leadership for student wellness initiatives including alcohol and other drug; prevention, early intervention and recovery support, body image, eating disorders, sexual health, wellness coaching, and other college health related issues. She serves as the Co-Chair for the Student Life Health and Wellness Collect Impact initiative and the Ann Arbor Campus and Community Coalition (A2C3).  She was the former Co-Chair of the Michigan Campus Coalition (MC3). She is a Center Affiliate for the Higher Education Center for Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention. In October 2010, she became a member of the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT) and a Co-Lead Facilitator for Leadershape, Inc. Mary Jo is also an adjunct instructor at Eastern Michigan University (since 1997).

In additional to her work at UHS she also conducts trainings and facilitates workshops on Motivational Interviewing (MI) and Resilience.

Current Projects

In her role as co-chair for the Student Life Health and Wellness Collective Impact Committee Mary Jo is working with a team of staff and students towards the adoption and implementation of a shared eight-dimension model of well-being for the University of Michigan. Mary Jo is also working with a multidisciplinary team to develop a social marketing campaign to look at the intersection of alcohol and sexual assault in a high-risk population. The other significant current project is to provide leadership for the Law Enforcement Collaborative that brings together key campus and community staff to share data that will inform the development of a strategic plan for effective and evidence-based policy development.


Amber Horwitz, B.S., MSW candidate, Founder Proud Parents of Loss.

Amber, founder of Proud Parents of Loss, is currently pursuing her Masters in Social Work at Eastern Michigan University.  Amber is a mother in long-term recovery that believes in providing as much support as possible to parents in recovery to ensure they are successful. Having worked in business dining for most of her professional life, Amber changed paths in 2016 when her daughter Harper died. Amber started an organization that offers a monthly support group for parents to come together and heal. In order to best serve her community of grieving parents she began her graduate studies at EMU. Amber continues to work with the recovering community as a prevention specialist with ENGAGE @ Eastern Michigan University.


Proud Parents of Loss Facebook Page:


November 26, 2019
7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Event Category:


Dawn Farm


St. Joseph Mercy Michigan Heart and Vascular Institute Auditorium
5325 Elliot Drive
Ypsilanti, MI 48197 United States
+ Google Map

COVID-19 Update. Adjustments to our programs. Learn more