Program Elements

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The birth of the Raymond J. Lesniak Experience, Strength & Hope Recovery High School came about through a unique public/private partnership between Prevention Links, one of the state’s leading non-profits focused on substance abuse prevention, and the Union County Vocational-Technical School District

Academic Success—The Raymond J. Lesniak Experience, Strength & Hope Recovery High School (ESH) is part of the award-winning Union County Vocational Technical School District. Our program utilizes the latest technology to connect our students with the Common Core-aligned NJ Virtual School. Students receive a combination of online and in-person instructional supports, in addition to participation in a variety of hands-on enrichment programs.

Health & Wellness—At ESH, we educate students on the critical importance of maintaining health and wellness as part of their ongoing recovery plan. This includes the role nutrition and exercise play in the healing process. Students are exposed to a variety of individual wellness disciplines, including yoga, tai chi, and meditation, in addition to traditional fitness and team-based physical education.

Mentorship— Our mentors are individuals between the ages of 21 and 35
who have lived experience with addiction and recovery and have been drug and alcohol-free for at least two years. These mentors role model healthy behavior and a recovery lifestyle while helping students explore social and recreational interests and activities. Our students are encouraged to meet with their mentors on a regular basis as well as to participate in group mentorship outings with all ESH students and mentors.

Family Involvement— At ESH, we believe that family involvement in the recovery process is critical to our students’ success. ESH staff is in regular contact with parents regarding student successes, challenges, and general progress. We encourage all parents to attend our monthly Parent Night, which offers both educational and supportive group components.