StandUp for Kids – Orange County
After winning his battle against substance abuse and getting sober in 2009, Vito Tassone is now the co-founder of his own addiction treatment center, 449 Recovery.
Vito Tassone, Chief Marketing Officer and Co-Founder of 449 Recovery
After successfully reaching sobriety, Vito was offered a position at the facility he received care from. In the 18 months Vito spent answering phones for the facility, he noticed something. He saw that clients were not receiving the care they needed in order to fully recover. This, along with improper insurance, resulted in drops from the recovery program before completion. Rodney Robinson, Vito’s current business partner and the program director at the time, teamed up and concluded these things were a consequence of monetary necessity.
Vito and Rodney ventured out to create an alternative and established 449 Recovery in 2011 and later opened a facility in 2012. When trying to decide on a name for their program they looked for something that would be meaningful and stand out.
“Going back to the third edition of the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, the page 449 is the page on acceptance. With acceptance being the solution to all our problems today, we need to teach our clients that we can’t control our environment. We can only control how we respond and react to a situation. We want to teach our clients how to respond to a situation rather than react,” said Vito.
449 Recovery originated in San Clemente, CA and in recent years bought their own facility in Mission Viejo, CA, where they have solidified their presence and currently reside. Their mission is to offer alternative programs to people who would often not qualify for the extended care needed for their recovery. 449 is not a 30 day program but a 90 day program, and they work best with clients who have already gone through detox and a recovery program successfully. 449 emphasizes mental health treatment and supplements that by offering programs such as psychiatric therapy and therapeutic meetings, both in groups and individually.
449 also works with their clients on personal development skills to help them re-enter society as productive members, which makes them a perfect partner for StandUp for Kids.
“The connection with StandUp has been seamless because at the core we very much have the same values” Vito explains.
449 Recovery and StandUp for Kids began their partnership in January this year after initiation by Carlia Oldfather, StandUp for Kids’ Director of Operations. Vito recalls meeting Carlia the first time,
“Often times we don’t have a front desk receptionist and since our lobby isn’t accessible to clients it’s usually empty. Carlia came in one day and rather than dropping a card off, she decided to be a little more adventurous and walk upstairs and look for somebody. Carlia walked in and we started talking.”
StandUp for Kids and 449 Recovery share the same overall goal of bettering the community, so the two organizations saw it fit to become extensions of one another. 449 Recovery has an adolescents program called 417 Recovery, which provides the same program opportunities in conjunction with what StandUp for Kids provides.
In determining which clients get referred to StandUp for Kids, 449 Recovery looks to see if the individual meets the qualifications of being under 25 years old, in considerable need, and having successfully gone through a recovery program.
“At a point it becomes very obvious to us which clients would benefit from working with StandUp for Kids in addition to us. Is it not just our recommendation though, clients have to have a level of wanting more out of their recovery.”
Even during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, 449 Recovery have been able to maintain their essential services for clients. Their mission is still the same and only the plan to execute it has changed. Much like StandUp for Kids, 449 Recovery has been conducting meetings and groups in a virtual space. They are still accepting clients and are committed to helping the community even in times like these.
StandUp for Kids looks forward to furthering the relationship with 449 Recovery as well as providing needed assistance to the community they serve.
To learn more about how you can make a difference or if your organization would like to partner with StandUp for Kids, please email [email protected] for more information.