PRESTONSBURG – Communities Against Drug Addiction held its third annual Celebrate Recovery event over the weekend at Archer Park. In recognition of September being recognized as National Recovery Month, the group wanted to celebrate those individuals who have fought addiction and overcome it.
“This weekend is about showing those in the community who still may be struggling with addiction they are not alone,” said Tim Hall, organizer of the event. “You cannot be ashamed of your addiction. If an individual is truly going to overcome this disease, they have to own it and decide it no longer owns them. We are willing to listen, to hold your hand, to be there for you to let you know you are not alone,”
Despite the rain, over two hundred people showed up to show their support of recovery. Eukie Ward, a recovering addict who has worked with Karen’s Place and now works as a peer support person for Mountain Comprehensive Care sang as part of her testimony and struggle with drug addiction. She was accompanied on guitar by her mother. The ladies attending Karen’s Place also performed a song for the event.
Destination Church was also at the event. Members of its outreach group talked with individuals about addiction and asked for prayer requests. Individuals requested prayer for themselves and others struggling with addiction. At the event, the group erected a cross where it placed all prayer requests to be prayed for by group members.
“We are here for the recovery community and if they are still dealing with addiction we are available to talk about the struggles and challenges it takes to overcome addiction,” said Destination Church Pastor Matthew Smith. “For someone who has struggled with addiction, I am three and a half years sober of an alcohol addiction, I know exactly what a lot of these people are going through. A lot of times they feel like they have been thrown away. We want them to know Destination Church is here for them to help in any way we can.”
Several individuals spoke about how addiction has affected their lives and what it took to get clean and stay clean.
“Living in recovery is much harder than living in addiction,” said Marla Tackett. “I am proud of the effort I put forth in staying in recovery. Together we can do great things. I celebrate my recovery every day and thank God for the blessings he has given me.”
Communities Against Drug Addiction extended its thanks to everyone who came out, those who helped to put the event together and the many who shared their stories of struggle, hope and recovery.
Andrea Saddler is a reporter for The Floyd County Times. She can be reached at (606) 886-8506.