Advocacy Leadership Article

NCADD-NJ is committed to building a strong network of citizen advocates for policy change to confront New Jersey’s most pressing addiction treatment, prevention, and recovery issues.

New Jersey residents can get involved by participating in any or all of the following programs:

The Advocacy Leadership Program aims to develop highly knowledgeable and trained citizens, especially those most impacted or affected by alcohol and drug addiction, who will contribute significantly to policy change on key issues.

The issues at the forefront of the program are Closing the Addiction Treatment Gap; ending the stigmatization of addiction by promoting recovery; preventing addiction; and Health Care Reform.

The program builds an understanding of self-advocacy, legislative processes, social change models, and story-telling as a means of effective advocacy.

Advocacy Leaders become empowered citizens engaged in systems change efforts by leading regional advocacy teams established throughout New Jersey. Each regional advocacy team is unique in motivation, and allows the advocacy leaders to work with each other in their county and surrounding counties on local and statewide addiction issues.

Advocacy Leaders make a commitment to attend one weekend retreat, additional education sessions to enhance skills, and participate in ongoing activities that provide them to be the face and voice on addiction issues.

The Advocacy Leadership Program has been growing since 2008, with an inaugural class of 25, to over 100 leaders throughout the state today. Advocacy Leaders are present in every county in New Jersey and represent 35 out of New Jersey’s 40 legislative districts.

You must apply to become an NCADD-NJ Advocacy Leader. You can apply (accepting applications year round) by clicking here.

The Leadership Partner Program is designed to network community members with their Advocacy Leaders in their area by joining regional advocacy teams and assisting with community outreach and education on addiction issues affecting their communities.

Leadership Partners support Advocacy Leaders in their statewide efforts for policy change by adding to the strength and visibility of the grassroots movement. Leadership partners help to localize the issues the Advocacy Leaders work on and add clout and strength behind the Advocacy Leaders stories.

Leadership Partners also attend a number of trainings that are exclusive to the leadership partners to enhance their knowledge around key issues in New Jersey, and to better help the leadership partners understand their roles and the leadership model NCADD-NJ uses.

Become a leadership partner by joining your regional team by emailing

The Think Advocacy Program is NCADD-NJ’s web based tool that allows members to take action by directly emailing their elected officials on addiction issues and keeping members informed on related legislative activities.

NCADD-NJ Think Advocacy is made up of members just like you. It is a collaborative effort involving concerned individuals and addiction professionals from each of New Jersey’s 40 legislative districts, working to shape the outcome of urgent legislation in Trenton. NCADD-NJ will inform and provide you with everything you need as a Think Advocacy member to get your message heard

Click here to become a Think Advocacy member.



This website is made possible, in part, by a grant from the New Jersey Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services.
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