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Another part of the addiction help puzzle

By DARRELL SMITH - dsmith@newsexaminer.com

St. Gabriel Church and House of Ruth are teaming up with a concerned parent and grandparent to put another piece of the puzzle in place in the local fight against substance abuse.

Sunday evening, the first 3D Next Generation: Dedicated, Determined, Driven for youth and Victory for Concerned Persons will meet to provide support, information and love for those who have family members and friends involved in substance abuse.

The new program has been a vision since the house opened. St. Gabriel Church had a vision and those two visions came together.

“Not only are we helping people with addiction, we are now helping families of people in addiction and that includes children, youth and adults,” she said. “To my knowledge, there has never been a program like this. Now everyone has something.”

The program will be each Sunday at 6 p.m. on the second floor of the St. Gabriel Parish office.

House of Ruth Recovery Coach Alicia Wedding put together programming that will be used in the younger groups and will be teaching one of the younger groups.

Wedding said there are several children of the residents that come to the home and other children as well as a lot of adults that want more information.

“The people of St. Gabriel know there is a need for this and we had the place for it and Sharon called Father Dustin (Boehm) and he called me because I had said I’d work on this,” Cheryl Hreno said. “This was two weeks ago.”

“Sharon had contacted me back in the summer and asked if I would interested in leading one of the groups, Victory for Concerned Persons,” said Melody Wright. “My daughter is an addict. I kept thinking I had to get on this so I called her and she was ready to call me. We met the next day and she told me about Alicia and her group. I realize now why I was waiting, because this is going to go together.”

The people in the Victory for Concerned Persons group will have children in addiction while the youth will have a parent in addiction

Wedding said there are two programs for children, ages 7-12 and 13-19, with age-appropriate lessons for the younger group and an actual group meeting with the teens. The groups will be in separate rooms with an assistant leading one group.

“Some kids don’t really know what is going on at home, they just have behavioral problems,” she said. “It’s a safe place for kids to come who have similar issues. It’s not about talking bad about their parents, but it’s a place for them to talk about behavioral issues they may have or if they just need support.

“It helps the children understand the situation they have at home and how to deal with it.”

Many of these kids are now living with grandparents because their parents are involved in substance abuse and they are angry because they don’t understand, Cranfill said. It is support for them. All the kids who will be there are going through the same issues so they can help and encourage each other.

The adult program came from a curriculum the House of Ruth has had for a few years waiting for the right person to lead the class, Cranfill said. There are so many people raising their grandchildren and they do not know what to do.

There is a Narcotics Anonymous meeting at the parish office at 7 p.m. so the adults can go from 6-7 p.m. and then those recovering will come.

School officials will be contacted so they can contact children or teens who may want to attend.

The group wanted to start the program before Christmas because it is a hard time of year for addicts, people in recovery or people who have loved ones in addiction, Cranfill said.

“It’s for anyone that has a loved one involved in addiction,” she said. “Brothers and sisters may try to help but unless they have been in addiction, they don’t understand. I have people calling me all the time, ‘What can I do?’ ‘Is there no support for me because I’m doing all I can for my son or daughter and raising my grandson.’ They have no one to talk to but now there is a place where there are people going through the same thing.”

There is no cost to attend and registration is not required but for those with questions, go to the website www.3dnextgeneration.net and the contact information is available or call the House of Ruth at 765-825-3333. Fayette Regional Health System will provide light snacks. Call if transportation is needed.