Addiction is a disease that can afflict anyone of any status, and most people have experienced the pain it causes in some way or another. Although the power of healing from addiction is celebrated and acknowledged widely this month, for Better Community Development, Inc. through the Theressa Hoover Memorial United Methodist Church in Little Rock, recovery is an everyday, around-the-clock mission.
Your gifts on Human Relations Day Sunday, helps encourage ordinary people to have a voice in changing the world.
Serving the disadvantaged of Little Rock’s 12th Street Corridor since 1981, Better Community Development makes the restoration of a community left behind a priority.
Out of an abundance of need, homeless ministries opened the door to rehabilitation ministries. As a result of a partnership with the City and HUD, the Hoover Treatment Center was created. It is a faith-based substance abuse treatment center that provides a safe, drug-free environment for participants and their families. Their approach is a unique, innovative, community-based support system with a specific cultural perspective on recovery using evidence-based, clinically-sound treatment.
“We take a holistic, comprehensive approach, you gotta look at who you are, how you got there, and what gaps need filling to restore your life first and then become a productive citizen,” said Rev. Bell.
The Center provides outpatient and residential services for people ages 18 and older with substance abuse problems. The center also includes a homeless shelter, an HIV/AIDS ministry, job training, and permanent and supportive housing.
Many success stories have emerged from the center, but none quite like one of the BCD’s current faith leaders. She struggled with addiction for her entire life before finding the Hoover Treatment Center. Not only did she find success in recovery, but she also found Jesus.
“God took the needle out of my arm,” said the former client.
She works with women who have exited the in-patient program to prevent relapse and nurture spiritual growth as an avenue for recovery.
“When you strive to be the best version of you that you can be, you start to embrace who God created you to be,” she said, “because you start to get proud of yourself, and God truly shows you he’s proud.”
Through Christ’s love and teaching, the people of Arkansas are finding eternal salvation and relief from addiction.
“When you give your life up when you say God I’m yours, is the moment you start living,” said the client.
“That joy and that peace you get is better than any drug I’ve had, and I’ve done them all,” she said.
Last Summer, Better Community Development received a portion of the $2.5 million in federal grants awarded to five statewide faith-based treatment centers in partnership with Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services (SAMHSA).
These funds, called The Faith Initiative, will strengthen existing health programs such as fitness, mental health counseling, psychiatric care, nutrition, and now, health equity education. This includes establishing a primary care provider for clients through a once-weekly mobile clinic and health insurance registration resources.
“Nobody wanted to deal with ‘those people,’ but ‘those people’ are our people, our uncles, mothers, sisters, and brothers,” said Rev. Bell.
The efforts of Theressa Hoover Memorial and the Better Community Development Center have proven to be the stuff of miracles. The UMC is well represented in this slice of Little Rock. May blessings continue to flow and all God’s children find the hope for recovery.
excerpt from a story by Caroline Loftin, contributing writer, Theressa Hoover Memorial Church
One of six churchwide Special Sundays with offerings of The United Methodist Church, Human Relations Day calls United Methodists to recognize the right of all God’s children in realizing their potential as human beings in relationship with one another. The special offering benefits neighborhood ministries through Community Developers, community advocacy through United Methodist Voluntary Services and work with at-risk teens through the Youth Offender Rehabilitation Program.