Valdosta Daily Times

Local News

October 23, 2009

Helping women defeat addictions

VALDOSTA — The Pines Family Campus, along with Leadership Lowndes 2009 Community Service Group No. 3, hosted an open house and a day of celebration Friday.

The event was designed to increase awareness of The Pines Family Campus, a “valuable” community resource that, said Program Coordinator Elizabeth Harbin, is changing lives and families through its “proven” substance abuse program.

The Pines Family Campus, located at 305 Smith Ave., provides a safe place for women wanting to overcome their addictions and lead productive lives and careers in the community, Harbin said. The campus serves up to 28 women and their children at a time, in a community atmosphere that builds skills, confidence and healthy living.

“We want people to know that The Pines Family Campus exists to help women regain control and enjoyment of their lives again through drug-free living,” Harbin said. “Since opening our doors in 2006, over 72 percent of women who graduate from our program maintain clean and sober lives and go on to be functioning and contributing citizens in our community.”

The day of celebration was planned to coincide with Drug-Free Work Week, observed nationwide Oct. 19 - 23, which highlights the benefits to employers, workers and communities of drug-free workplace programs, said Leadership Lowndes Community Service Group No. 3 member Sementha Mathews.

Community Service Group No. 3 is composed of Mathews, Bob Bolton, Marcie Dennard, Carla Jordan, Keith Lambert, and Michael Smith. In addition to helping facilitate the public awareness campaign, the group has assisted The Pines Family Campus since February with some of its more pressing needs, collecting hundreds of personal hygiene items, cleaning supplies and school supplies, repairing and replacing campus computers, improving the playground area and adding new recreation equipment, Mathews said.

The open house included a tour of the facility and testimonials from residents about how the program has helped them. Angela Wilson and Alexis Waters, winners of the essay contest held in conjunction with the open house, read their essays about what The Pines Family Campus program has meant to them.

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