Our Newsroom 

Our Newsroom

As you can imagine, there is always something happening around the house: drug-free babies are born to their recovering mothers; 2 a.m. feedings; first-steps; coin ceremonies; new jobs; graduations; celebrations; new programs and grants; and other wonderful milestones in the journey toward a new beginning.

Here in our newsroom, you will find updates on these things and more. For more information, contact Lisbeth Couser, Director of Development and Marketing, at 615-255-5222 ext. 106 or LCouser@RenewalHouse.org


Renewal House an effective solution to opiates

11/21/2017 -

Renewal House an effective solution to opiates

One of the most deadly problems our community is experiencing right now is the opioid addiction issue.

In just the past few weeks, annual statistics on the issue were released showing what we all have feared: the problem continues to explode with few proven solutions.

However, here is the good news. An innovative resource already exists right here in Nashville. And it has a 21-year track record of success.

In the mid-1990s, then Juvenile Judge Andy Shookoff and magistrate Mary Walker recognized a troubling pattern. Many of the cases under their jurisdiction involved crack-addicted mothers and their children.

The prevailing approach at that time was to send moms to jail and place the kids in foster care. Often, the mothers would “do their time”, be released from jail and continue the cycle, falling back into the throes of addiction.

Similarly, at that time, the kids rarely received necessary behavioral services, experienced multiple placements, missed far too many school days and continued to be impacted by the trauma. Neonatal doctors and nurses at Vanderbilt University Medical Center were also noticing the huge impact of babies born to addicted mothers resulting in longer hospital stays and increasing costs many times over.

Then Mayor Phil Bredesen launched a Commission with representatives from law enforcement, courts, health care providers, community volunteers and nonprofits to study the issue and to develop recommendations and solutions.

Among the group’s observations was that programs that kept families together in recovery allowed families to remain intact and had shown lower recidivism rates.

Incarceration, was both an expensive and ineffective solution. With appropriate resources and attention these moms could become working, taxpaying responsible adults. In a truly bipartisan effort, a Democratic president, Republican governor, Congress and our General Assembly worked together to pass legislation that created a “pilot” program that would keep mothers and their children together.

Through that leadership and with the help of many others in the community — particularly the Junior League of Nashville and National Council of Jewish Women, Nashville — a place called Renewal House was born.

Renewal House is a long-term residential and intensive outpatient treatment community where women suffering from addiction and substance abuse can find hope – and their children can get the help they need. It has been phenomenally effective, peer-reviewed, supported by government and nonprofits alike and has traditionally had a double- digit waiting list for admission.

In 1996, the drug problem was mostly crack, meth and alcohol. At that time, few of us had ever envisioned prescription drugs as an addiction threat.

Enter today’s epidemic: opiates.

Today, 3 out of 4 women who seek treatment from Renewal House have a problem involving opioids. As the problem continues to grow, so does the waiting list at Renewal House.

An effective solution is already here. However, capacity is limited. As Tennessee turns desperately from the discovery phase on the opioid epidemic to the solution phase, the last thing we need to do is “re-invent the wheel.”

It will be more effective, less expensive and take less time to expand and replicate a proven model — Renewal House — that has been effective for over 600 families in Middle Tennessee.

Rep. Brenda Gilmore represents the 54th District in the Tennessee House of Representatives and Deborah Taylor Tate is Co-chair of the National Task Force on Opiates. Both are Renewal House Advisory Board members.

Rep. Brenda Gilmore Deborah Taylor Tate


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Renewal House Excited to Participate in the Big Payback on May 6th

04/21/2014 -

Renewal House Participating in The Big Payback

Tennessee’s First “Big Payback” Encourages Middle Tennesseans to
Give Local and Support Area Nonprofits during 24-Hour Campaign

Nashville, Tenn.  – Renewal House is taking part in The Big Payback, a region-wide, 24-hour online giving event created to help Middle Tennessee nonprofits raise funds vital to continue their work, which directly improves the community around them.

The inaugural event, sponsored by The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee and the Kharis Foundation, will begin at 6 a.m. on Tuesday, May 6 and end on Wednesday, May 7 at 6 a.m. Once the clock starts, anyone can visit TheBigPayback.org or www.renewalhouse.org and make donations to Renewal House, and other participating nonprofits, including schools and religious institutions that serve the 40 counties of Middle Tennessee.

“We’re truly excited to take place in this day of giving, spotlighting the amazing work happening in Nashville and the generous spirit that is prominently woven into the fabric of our city,” said Jennifer Wheeler, development director of Renewal House. Donations received with support the programs and services of Renewal House, enabling families affected by addiction to restore, renew, and recover together.

Gifts from the public will be boosted with funds from sponsors of The Big Payback. Renewal House will vie for financial incentives and additional prizes through the online leaderboard, which will track donations in real time.

"For 24 hours on May 6 and 7, The Big Payback will be the most inclusive, most collaborative giving event in Middle Tennessee history. It will be an easy, fun and a meaningful way for all of us to show our local pride and give back,” said Ellen Lehman, president of The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee. “Nonprofits do life-changing work every day across Middle Tennessee and it’s time for us to come together to support their efforts and recognize the positive impact they have on our neighbors, in our own backyards.”

Public donors will be able to view and select from participating nonprofits based on location and focus area, such as animals, education, healthcare and more. Donors can support multiple nonprofits and make gifts of any size, from $10 and up.

For more information, visit TheBigPayback.org.

About Renewal House

In community with addicted women and their children, Renewal House fosters healing, resiliency and continuing recovery to enhance family health. Our array of services includes licensed gender-specific intensive outpatient addiction treatment, a comprehensive family residential recovery program for pregnant and parenting women and their minor children, early intervention and prevention services for the children, and affordable rental apartments in a drug-free environment. For more information, call 615-255-5222 or visit www.renewalhouse.org.

About The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee
The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee oversees more than 1,000 charitable funds, providing customized philanthropic solutions with flexibility for donors, nonprofit organizations and the community. In the past 22 years, The Community Foundation has distributed more than $684 million to community programs and institutions. It is located at 3833 Cleghorn Avenue, #400, Nashville, Tennessee 37215. For more information, call 615-321-4939 or visit www.cfmt.org.

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64,000 Diapers and more!

03/28/2014 -

Click here to read our newsletter, "64,000 Diapers and more!"

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Renewal House Announced as Nashville Predators Foundation Grant Recipient

03/03/2014 -

We are excited and grateful to be listed as one of the Nashville Predators Foundation's grant recipients. The Nashville Predators Foundation are long-time supporters of Renewal House, supporting mothers and their children as they restore, renew, and recovery together. Click here for more information on the wonderful work the Nashville Predators Foundation is supporting in our city.

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Santa Visits Renewal House Families

12/24/2013 -

Click here to read, "Santa Visits Renewal House Families."

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Renewal House: A Treat for a Happy Holiday Season

11/27/2013 -

Click here to read, "Renewal House: A Treat for a Happy Holiday Season."

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Renewal House: Adopt-a-Family Program and a Note of Thanks

11/14/2013 -

Click here to read, "Renewal House Adopt-a-Family Program and a Note of Thanks."

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Join Us for A Women's Thanksgiving

10/10/2013 -

Click here to read, "Join Us for A Women's Thanksgiving."

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The Kick-Off Event benefiting Renewal House is One Week Away!

09/27/2013 -

Click here to read, "The Kick-Off Event benefiting Renewal House is One Week Away!"

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Renewal House Invites You to Be Creative, Save the Date and More

07/07/2013 -

Click here to read, "Renewal House Invites You to Be Creative, Save the Date and More."

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