Flint, MI – New Paths Inc., a nonprofit substance use treatment center in north Flint, recently received $1 million in federal funding through Congress’s Community Project Funding initiative.

Jim Hudgens, executive director of New Paths, announced that the funding will be used for repairs and upgrades to the aging treatment center at a Jan. 18, 2023 press conference.

Hudgens said New Paths’ building is nearly 75 years old and was originally Flint General Hospital.

“This $1 million allows us to fix our infrastructure,” Hudgens said. “We’re going to revamp the front of the entrance. It will take care of some of the [disability] barrier issues we have, with this being an old building. We also have the windows we need to replace.”

Hudgens said that the federal dollars would not be enough to complete all the necessary improvements, which he estimated will cost $2 million, but the money will allow the center to “do the important work” to the building and enable staff to help more individuals without cutting into the programming budget.

Hudgens also offered his thanks to Congressman Dan Kildee, who secured federal funding for New Paths, at the press conference on Jan. 18.

“We—myself and my staff—went through a really exhaustive process to find the most effective programs that could be made more effective by support that we can provide,” Kildee said at the press conference. “And that, of course, leads us here to New Paths.”

Kildee also noted New Paths was “one of the premier substance abuse treatment and recovery centers” in the region.

“I was able to get was $1 million for New Paths to make the necessary changes in this facility to make it more efficient, more practical, more useful, and by extension, to be able to serve more people who are need of these really important services,” Kildee continued.

Hudgens said that New Paths serves up to 120 clients at any given time in their residential treatment facilities in addition to more than 300 people in outpatient services across Genesee County.

Erin McClelland, clinical director of New Paths, said that the organization also has provided bedside hospital interventions with peer recovery coaches and medication-assisted treatment since 2022.

McClelland called addiction a nationwide public health crisis, adding that Genesee County has the third highest substance use and misuse rates in the state—a problem that only increased along with mental health issues and alcohol and illicit drug use during the COVID-19 pandemic, she said.

New Paths leadership said they will announce a timeline for facility improvements at a future date.

Zachary Marano is Flint Beat’s local government reporter. Zack is originally from Milford township and returns to southeast Michigan after reporting for a daily newspaper in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula....