NARCOTICS ANONYMOUS -THE WAY TO RECOVERY
Narcotics Anonymous started in Slave Lake about 3 years ago. A young man who lived in Slave Lake all his life realized his addiction and was determined to come clean. After registering in 2 recovery programs in Edmonton without success, he decided to put his trust in a mentor who took him to Vancouver where he experienced success.
When returning to Slave Lake, he discontinued relationships with friends who used drugs unless they agreed to come clean.
He saw a need for a support group in Slave Lake where many are addicted to crack cocaine , marijuana, and prescription drug abuse or pill addiction. There are several Narcotic Anonymous Support Groups in Alberta, so the young man became a mentor and started a group in Slave Lake. NA is based upon the 12 Steps of Recovery found in Alcoholics Anonymous.
The Team Leader and Mentor said, ” Narcotics Anonymous is not just a support group for drug addicts, it’s also for alcoholics. Coming clean and recovering from the chains of addiction is an ongoing process, and although families support the addict, they cannot relate to the bondage the user experiences. That is why this group is so important.”
Once recovery takes place and the individual experiences “clean time, he must give back what was given to him, namely support and a light at the end of a dark tunnel,” added the Leader.
Individuals range from 17- 60 years old with up to 46 attending, but on the average 14-16 people. The success rate measured by family reunion, job security and community acceptance , thus far, is 15. “These people have taken back their lives and become empowered without drugs including alcohol,” stressed the Leader.
Meetings take place at Northern Lakes College Monday and Thursday at 8 pm.. The college rents the room to the group for $5.00 and each member contributes what he/she can.
When one walks through the door, he/she is nervous, but is quickly welcomed by a friendly open environment. The new member is given a 24 hr.white key chain FOB to show they have agreed to surrender their drug habit. The Chairperson starts with a Serenity Prayer and the Secretary introduces new individuals who are given hugs in good faith and trust. Shared experiences and support from those who have surrendered and recovered provide a solid foundation for the success of this support group in Slave Lake.
“The door is open twice a week, you just need to be ready to surrender,” urged the mentor.