Number of people seeking substance abuse treatment on the rise

Posted at 11:07 AM, Oct 21, 2016
and last updated 2018-07-24 21:30:29-04

A nonprofit organization that provides substance abuse treatment is opening new facilities in Central Texas, in part to meet the growing demand for their services. 

The Cenikor Foundation opened a new facility in Austin located at 2410 Howard, due to an increase in demand.

The Temple facility, which moved to 416A N. 3rd Street in August, to increase accessibility for clients, will continue to provide outpatient treatment and to serve women through the Post- Partum Intervention Program.

"We wanted to break down any barriers that people were having as far as transportation and the location of our previous location,” Cenikor Foundation Senior Outpatient Manager Nick Vaché said.

According to Vaché, there have already seen an increase in the number of clients at the new location. Cenikor Foundation served 285 people in Bell County in 2015 and the nonprofit organization projects to serve up to 325.

"We have served more people, which could mean, a two prong, that there is more use happening or that more people are aware of our services,” Vaché said.

He added more clients who use methamphetamine, cannabis and alcohol are seeking for treatment.

Harmony Love, who receives individual counseling and attends group counseling at the new Temple facility, started seeking treatment for marijuana use two months ago.

According to Love, she smoked the drug in October of 2015 and June of this year after the loss of her father. Jim Myers who owned a TV Repair Service business in Temple died in Jan. of 2015.

"With him not being here, I eventually turned to drugs to get through every day and the loss of him not being here,” Love said.

Love who is expecting her fourth child next month said she used the drug twice during her pregnancy.

"At that time because I was using, I was more selfish to my needs and blocking out the loss of my father than understanding there is an unborn child who doesn't have a say so in this,” Love said

The 23-year-old who said the program has helped her is expected to graduate from it next week, just in time before her baby is due. Her future son is in good health and is at a normal weight, according to Love.

"If I had been using throughout the entire pregnancy or gotten the help I needed, it could've led to complications,” Love said.

Another Cenikor facility in Central Texas has also seen an increase in the number of patients. Many of them who go there for detoxification services have used opioids or IV drugs.

"The pattern seems to be, they start on prescription opiates and once they have exhausted means of obtaining them, then they may go ahead to purchasing drugs from the street and that will eventually lead to heroin, because of how inexpensive it is," Jeter said.

Cenikor Waco Detox Residential Facility Senior Manager Eric Jeter said in 2015, they had up to 800 clients and that number is expected to be to up to 1,000 this year.

On Saturday, several law enforcement agencies in our area will participate in the National Drug Take Back Day where you can dispose of your prescription drugs safely.

Some of those agencies, include Harker Heights, Killeen, Gatesville, Hillsboro, Lorena, Hewitt, Waco and Woodway police departments. The Coryell County Sheriff's Office is another agency participating in the program. 

They will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. To find out another location near you, click here.

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