Supporting communities through addiction recovery

Thanks to Bouvier Insurance reaching their goal of 500 votes + shares, Community Speaks Out won a $10,000 donation from Liberty Mutual and Safeco Insurance to further their mission of providing support and opportunities to individuals and families accessing recovery. Congrats to the team and thank you for supporting them!

While nearly half of all Americans have a close friend or family member who’s struggled with drug addiction*, drug addiction remains a stigmatized topic. And with the continued rise in drug overdose deaths, of which opioids now account for more than six-in-ten, the situation is urgent.

A family with a mission

The nonprofit Community Speaks Out was started by a family in crisis who needed support. “When we found out about our son’s addiction, we could not keep it quiet,” said Tammy and Joe de la Cruz, who co-founded Community Speaks Out alongside Linda Labbe and Lisa Cote Johns in 2016. The de la Cruz family made it their goal to help other families start healing from the disease of addiction, noting “it is fundamentally human nature – people helping people.”

“It is fundamentally human nature – people helping people.”

-Tammy and Joe de la Cruz, co-founders of Community Speaks Out

Supporting communities through addiction recovery 1
Ashley Wallace, of Bouvier Insurance, and Community Speaks Out board members Linda Labbe, Cheryl Biekert, Joe de la Cruz and Tammy de la Cruz table at a community health awareness event.

We’re in this together

Community Speaks Out’s mission is to improve the community by providing support and opportunities to individuals and families to access recovery. This includes grief support for families who have lost a loved one to addiction, certification programs for sober living training specialists, helping people get into treatment facilities and more.

Bouvier Insurance first got involved with Community Speaks Out in 2019 after Ashley Wallace joined the team as a personal lines account manager and shared her passion for the amazing organization. Wallace, whose own recovery story is an inspiration, helps with community outreach in local schools and serves as president of The Christopher Johns Sober Softball Tournament, an annual event that brings healing to grieving families and awareness to the community.

Supporting communities through addiction recovery
Ashley Wallace teamed up with Avery Points Interdisciplinary Learning Community to create an educational panel called The Faces of Addiction at Avery Point UConn. This open discussion with students and staff included risks and prevention of addiction, as well as signs to look for in people struggling with addiction.

Leading with compassion

Today, over a dozen Bouvier Insurance employees volunteer at the annual Sober Softball Tournament, and the agency plays a big part in the annual gala as well. From overfilling a gala table to donating monetary support and gift baskets for the event, Bouvier helps Community Speaks Out meet their goals and raise awareness in the community.

When asked why Community Speaks Out is so close to her heart, Wallace highlighted a strong desire to help others – a desire she saw exemplified by Joey Gingerella, the son of Tammy and Joe de la Cruz. “Watching the changes Joey was making in the community through Community Speaks Out inspired me to do the same,” she said. When Joey unexpectedly lost his life to gun violence in 2016, it was important to Wallace that she help carry on Joey’s vision for awareness and change.

“That day, Community Speaks Out possibly saved that man’s life.”

Ashley Wallace, personal lines account manager at Bouvier Insurance

Supporting communities through addiction recovery 3
Wallace and Joey Gingerella at the first Community Speaks Out’s Christopher Johns Memorial Annual Sober Softball Tournament in 2016. Joey was the first president of the tournament and Wallace took over to continue the event in 2017 after Gingeralla's passing.

One of the many memorable moments of Community Speaks Out helping others happened at an annual Sober Softball Tournament when an attendee arrived under the influence. One of the participating teams, a group of people from a recovery treatment center, spoke to the attendee with compassion, offered him help and ultimately accompanied him to a treatment program at the end of the day. “This moment showcased what Community Speaks Out does by providing a safe compassionate camaraderie within the community,” Wallace said. “That day, Community Speaks Out possibly saved that man’s life.”

Supporting communities through addiction recovery 4
Tammy de la Cruz and Johnny Pascarelli at the Community Speaks Out office in 2020. Johnny is one of the amazing individuals in recovery and a recipient of services through Community Speaks Out.
The Third Christopher Johns Memorial Annual Sober Softball Tournament, a video montage created by Wallace for the nonprofit in lieu of being able to hold the event in 2020.

Your vote is much more than a simple share or comment. It will get Community Speaks Out one step closer to a $10,000 donation, which could provide as many as 50 people with the opportunity for sober living housing in addition to assistance with therapy, recovery coaching, expenses for traveling and a stay at a treatment facility. Visit Bouvier Insurance and Community Speaks Out to learn more.

*Pew Research Center, 2017; http://pewrsr.ch/2gFsr5b

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Gordon W Lyde
4 months ago

I totally vote for Community Speak Out. The work they is amazing.

Matt Biekert
4 months ago

Community Speaks Out gets my vote!

Chopstix Golf
4 months ago

CSO gets my vote!

Ashley Wallace
4 months ago

They’ll always have my vote!

Gordon W Lyde
4 months ago

Community Speaks Out is such an AMAZING Organization!!!! It’s level of “give back” is unmatched!!!

Mark Spinnato
4 months ago

They have my vote!!

Jeffrey Tanguay
4 months ago

You have my vote!

BobbiJo Matthewson
4 months ago

They’ve got my vote!! This organization hits home to many people and they don’t even realize it.

Adam Winters
4 months ago

Aye!

Robert Yuchniuk
4 months ago

The work Bouvier and Community Speaks Out provides in our community is awe inspiring! They have my vote!

Gail Lane
4 months ago

I vote for Community Speak out !!!

Jennifer Brooks
4 months ago

This is a wonderful organization. Great job everyone!

Amanda
4 months ago

Community Speaks out gets my VOTE!!!

Maxine Yuchniuk
4 months ago

You have my vote!!!

Betsy Jacobson-Wall
4 months ago

You have my vote!

Cheryl Plawecki
4 months ago

CSO has my vote!

Tonya L Kloiber
4 months ago

Community Speaks out deserves it!

Maura yellen
4 months ago

CSO has my vote

Tyler Smith
4 months ago

Thank you for all you do for the community. You have my vote!

Pete Mathieu
4 months ago

Got my vote

Tanya Deveau
4 months ago

The work Community Speaks Out does for so many in our community definitely earns them my vote!!

Tanya Deveau
4 months ago

Community Speaks Out definitely earns my vote!

Gary D Giordano
4 months ago

Community Speaks Out has my vote!

Chelsea Cannon
4 months ago

What an awesome organization! Well deserving of this award!

Gary D Giordano
4 months ago

They always have my vote

Jackie Varjas
4 months ago

Community speaks out has helped so many. Wonderful people helping people!

Nicole Giordano LaJeunesse
4 months ago

They have my vote!!!

Jessica Wrigley
4 months ago

Congratulations! Keep up the great work!

Tyler Smith
4 months ago

CSO has my vote!

Kim Petrovich
4 months ago

What a great message and mission! They have my vote!

Tyler Smith
4 months ago

You have my vote!!

Tammy
4 months ago

Tammy de la Cruz

Elizabeth Duarte
4 months ago

Voting for CSO is the best feeling!

Tammy
4 months ago

The most rewarding thing I have ever been a part of. People helping people.

Neil Cronkrite
4 months ago

Great to see this organization receive a Make More Happen Award!

Lexy Monroe
4 months ago

CSO is a wonderful team who tirelessly work to help others in need. You have my vote.

TAMMY DE LA CRUZ
4 months ago

PEOPLE HELPING PEOPLE

Allison Ryan
4 months ago

Thank you so much for all you do in the community!

Joseph yuchniuk
4 months ago

You have my vote

Josie
4 months ago

Thank you for the good you do!

Kerry
4 months ago

Great cause and wonderful story!

Pledge Property Management Account 0006
4 months ago

You have my vote ~ Great Job!

Anne
4 months ago

They have my vote, loved Joey, love Ashley and CSO

Greg Aldinger
4 months ago

Community Speaks out is AWESOME! They have saved countless lives with their commitment and dedication to our community! CSO definitely gets my vote!!!

Deborah
4 months ago

Hardest working nonprofit group, anytime day or night if someone needs help they are on it immediately!!

Kara Walters
4 months ago

Community Speaks Out definitely earns my vote! Thank you for the work that you do.

Nancy Lyons
4 months ago

Sounds like you are doing great work. Awesome job.

Rose Mancini
4 months ago

You have my Vote!

Peter Conover
4 months ago

Great Cause – Community Speaks Out has my vote!

Kay Cyr
4 months ago

Congratulations to Bouvier Insurance the work you do in your community is incredible! Thank you for sharing the Community Speaks Out stories.

Make More Happen - How to Vote

  • The nonprofit has received a $5,000 donation on behalf of the agent and you can help them win $5,000 more by voting!
  • There are two ways to vote: click the blue social media icons and share the story to your feed, or leave a comment at the bottom of their story here.
  • That’s right: you can vote up to four times to help them win!