WBZ Cares: MEDA Treatments

BOSTON (WBZ-AM) -- Each month, “WBZ Cares” highlights a worthy non-profit organization and tells the story of what that organization does for the community. This month WBZ is profiling MEDA (Multi-Service Eating Disorders Association) in Newton which works to prevent the continuing spread of eating disorders through education and early detection.

Chief Clinical Director Amanda DeStefano says clients receive an individualized assessment when they come in.

“Much of the time we're connecting people to services, connecting them to treatment. We really do our best to get people in the MEDA office so we can really do a full evaluation and really get to know their eating symptoms,” stated DeStefano.

DeStefano says along with individual treatment, support groups are essential, too.

“Seeing clients flourish in groups is just an amazing part of it because they can hear their peers talk about the things that for years, sometimes, they've been with alone in their head and struggling with and thinking, ‘Nobody else thinks this way, I must be crazy’. To have that sense of community and support is really empowering,” DeStefano said.

DeStefano says it is a major step when someone comes in for help.

“We may have people who have been in multiple treatments before and nothing's worked. Or they did have a period of success in recovery and they're coming back and feeling a lot of shame that they've relapsed. And so, our goal here is make everybody feel supported from the time they walk in, to the time that they leave, and know that full recovery is possible,” DeStefano outlined.

This woman from Rhode Island battled anorexia and says the support groups and clinicians at MEDA helped her overcome her challenges.

“I look forward to any opportunity I have to help others, to give back and to support MEDA. And also opportunities to share my story. The help MEDA gave me is a huge piece of my story, a piece of my recovery,” the Rhode Island woman stated.

This woman from Concord had recovered from a high school eating disorder, but then faced the problem again after her son was diagnosed with autism. She also got help from MEDA.

“It just sort of hit at my Achilles heel and I relapsed. They hooked me up with a wonderful therapist and dietician and really helped me to sort of secure my recovery once again,” the Concord woman explained.

WBZ NewsRadio1030's Doug Cope Reports

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