In the News
Samaritan Daytop Village Holds Ribbon-Cutting for The Richard Pruss Wellness Center
Samaritan Daytop Village Dedicates New Integrative Center for Behavioral Health and Wellness in the Bronx
The newly contructed 84,000-square-foot facility honors Richard Pruss, Samaritan Daytop Village's first President and CEO and a pioneer in the field of substance use disorder treatment
(July 14, 2022 - Bronx, NY) - Samaritan Daytop Village, one of New York State’s largest health and human services providers with programs in all five NYC boroughs, today held a ribbon-cutting and dedication ceremony for The Richard Pruss Wellness Center, a new integrative center for behavioral health and wellness, in the Bronx.
Located at 510 Courtlandt Avenue, the six-floor, 84,000-square-foot building is home to six Samaritan Daytop Village programs, as well as the organization’s centralized Admissions team and soon-to-open Samaritan Daytop Health (a new primary healthcare center). The building opened in the Mott Haven section of The Bronx in September 2021 during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Center was named after the late Richard Pruss, Samaritan Daytop Village’s first President & CEO, who dedicated his life to the field of substance use disorder. Pruss helped revolutionize the field by integrating addiction treatment with medical care, addressing clients’ most common co-occurring health conditions such as Hepatitis C and diabetes. The ribbon-cutting and dedication ceremony took place on the fourth anniversary of Pruss’s death, July 14, 2018.
"Richard Pruss was a visionary who dreamed of creating a place where people could access our behavioral health programs under one roof," said Mitchell Netburn, President & CEO of Samaritan Daytop Village. "The Richard Pruss Wellness Center is a fitting tribute to a person who dedicated his entire career to helping individuals in need of specialized services. He was a pioneer who offered a holistic approach that revolutionized the treatment of substance use disorder. We are deeply honored to make Richard's dream a reality and to see his legacy live on – for the greater good – for generations to come."
The collection of programs at the new Center provides a comprehensive approach to care for patients who require behavioral health services. Programs offer treatment for substance use or mental health disorders, care management services for severe or chronic health conditions, peer-based recovery services, and primary medical care. Samaritan Daytop Village relocated six of its existing programs to the building:
- Independence Outpatient Treatment Program
- Mott Haven Opioid Treatment Program (formerly the Willis Avenue Opioid Treatment Program)
- New Beginnings Community Counseling Center
- Hope Care Management Program
- Pathway Home Program
- PARC Bronx (Peer Alliance Recovery Center)
The ribbon-cutting and dedication ceremony was attended by NY State Senator Luis Sepúlveda, Bronx Borough President Vanessa L. Gibson, and Kathy Riddle, widow of Richard Pruss and Co-Founder & President/CEO Emeritus of Outreach (a Queens-based treatment agency). Also present were Jose Rodriguez, Chief of Staff for NYC Council Member Diana Ayala; as well as mental health, substance use treatment, peer recovery and family service advocates, and community leaders and residents.
“Samaritan Daytop Village has been a pioneer in innovative approaches to behavioral health and substance use treatment, delivering results that have saved thousands of lives. The Richard Pruss Wellness Center marks a new chapter in the agency’s history, strengthening successfully proven programs while integrating and expanding other vital resources. I am honored to have this new center in my Senatorial District,” said State Senator Luis Sepúlveda.
Bronx Borough President Vanessa L. Gibson said: “Accessibility is essential for mental health and substance use treatment to succeed, and that’s exactly what the Richard Pruss Wellness Center brings to our community. This new center will not only provide geographic accessibility, but also access to multiple resources and programs centralized under one roof – starting from admissions, all the way to the successful completion of treatment and supportive services for clients to remain healthy in the long term. I want to thank Samaritan Daytop Village for their commitment and dedication to prioritizing behavioral health and wellness in our borough, and I look forward to our continued work together as we build a healthier Bronx.”
Kathy Riddle, widow of Richard Pruss, and Co-Founder & President/CEO Emeritus of Outreach, said: “The Richard Pruss Wellness Center is a wonderful tribute to a man who cared for so many individuals in need of treatment and other services that would change the direction of their lives. Richard believes in the unlimited potential of the human spirit and recovery.”
Born in Brooklyn, President & CEO Emeritus Richard Pruss spent 50 years with Samaritan Daytop Village in a variety of roles before retiring and serving on the Board of Directors until his death four years ago. Among his many accomplishments was spearheading the agency’s growth from a single clinic in Queens to one of the largest nonprofit substance use treatment providers in New York State. Under his guidance, Samaritan Daytop Village became one of the first providers to offer primary healthcare services alongside treatment to address clients’ most common chronic diseases and health conditions.
About Samaritan Daytop Village:
For over 60 years, Samaritan Daytop Village has been improving the quality of life for New Yorkers. The nonprofit is nationally recognized for the treatment of substance use disorder as well as for the veteran-specific approach it pioneered. Our continuum of services also includes health and mental health care, transitional and supportive housing, educational and vocational assistance, peer-assisted recovery, and specialized programs for adolescents, families, and seniors. Annually, Samaritan Daytop Village serves over 33,000 people at more than 60 facilities throughout New York City, Long Island, and the lower Hudson Valley. For more information about Samaritan Daytop Village, visit https://samaritanvillage.org/.