2010 Josh Sycks Memorial Golf Classic Scrapbook

On Sept. 13, 2010, the Seventh Annual Josh Sycks Memorial Golf Classic teed off at the Eagle Brook Country Club in Geneva. The fundraising event benefits the residential substance abuse treatment programs offered by Lutheran Social Services of Illinois (LSSI) at its Behavioral Health Services (BHS) Center in Elgin. The golf outing includes lunch, 18 holes of golf, dinner and auctions.

Randy and Sue Sycks of Geneva organize the annual Josh Sycks Memorial Golf Classic in memory of their son, Josh, who died of a heroin overdose at age 20. He was on a waiting list for a residential rehabilitation facility, but no beds were available at a time when he needed help the most.

“I can’t believe that after eight years, the heroin problem has gotten even worse, and state funding [for substance abuse treatment] is in even more trouble,” Sue Sycks said prior to the 2010 event. In fact, the August 1, 2010, issue of the Chicago Tribune, in an article entitled, “Suburbia’s Heroin Addiction,” reported that the Chicagoland region has the most severe heroin addiction problem in the country, according to a Roosevelt University study.

“It seems that we can’t do anything about the problem [right now]; but maybe we can help with the treatment,” Sue said.

LSSI’s highly successful program in Elgin offers a place for people wanting to reclaim their lives from the grip of addiction. For recovery to be successful, long-term structure and support is essential. After completing a four-week residential treatment program, individuals either return home, if it is an environment that is supportive to their recovery, or go to live at a halfway house or recovery home. The Elgin site also offers a men’s halfway house on its premises.

LSSI offers four levels of care: detox (up to 15 days), residential rehabilitation (30-day stay), residential extended aftercare (90 to 180 days) and outpatient. LSSI provides services primarily in the Chicago area. In 2010, 21 percent of LSSI’s clients were those with substance abuse issues. And 76 percent of the 1,403 clients who completed LSSI’s detox program were successfully admitted to their referred level of care, which is a positive indicator for long-term recovery from addiction.

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