Over the weekend, the men from Iron House got together to do a little spring cleaning around the apartments. This entailed spreading mulch, trimming the hedges, ripping out weeds, raking up leaves and garbage, sweeping the parking lots, and various other tasks to spruce up the property.
Taking on the responsibility of upkeep for these five buildings in Kentwood is an important part of being a resident and something the Guiding Light Recovery program takes very seriously. When we purchased these properties and created Iron House, many in the neighborhood were reluctant to have these section-8 housing units taken over by men recovering from drug and alcohol addictions. Because of this perception we make it a point to ensure that Iron House is maintained and well looked after. We understand all too well the stigma that exists with addiction and recognize that in our case stereotypes don’t come into existence in a vacuum. Today, however, the local authorities and the community of Kentwood is actually quite glad to have Iron House in the neighborhood. The men who live at Iron House look after themselves, are responsible, and are made up of contributing members of the community trying to make their way in the world just like everyone else. The men are proud to be a part of breaking the stigma surrounding recovery from addiction.
Having a place like Iron House to call home after the Guiding Light Recovery program is a huge factor in the incredible success that so many men experience in their sobriety here. 78% of men that come through our doors, complete the Recovery program, and move to Iron House are able to achieve a year of sobriety or longer. Iron House is a safe, financially viable, and uplifting communal experience for men that for so long have been left to face their demons alone. It is, we believe, what truly sets Guiding Light apart from other substance abuse treatment programs. Instead of being “cut loose” after getting short-term sobriety under their belt, men are able to come to Iron House and stay connected to a community of like-minded peers. Many stay for two, sometimes as long as three years, and are able to take advantage of the stability that Iron House offers in order to pick up the pieces of their lives. “Thank God for Iron House,” said one of our former clients. “It’s the best part of the program. It’s better than a graduation. It’s a place where you can live and be surrounded by people that care about you and love you, and that’s essential for my recovery, I know that.”
Iron House truly is a God-send for so many men that have known nothing but chaos and uncertainty their whole lives. Thank you so much for affording us the resources to make this all possible. Thank you for investing in our philosophy of long-term, holistic, and all-encompassing treatment. We give men the time, support, and the resources to live up to their God-given potential. It may take a little longer to truly witness the dividends, but when the pay-off arrives it is truly long-lasting and impactful far beyond one man. It is crucial that men struggling with addiction in our community have an accessible place to go when they need help. The only cost for men to come to Guiding Light is their honesty and willingness to change. This could not be possible without the help of people like you. Without the tireless devotion and generosity of our donors, volunteers, and advocates, Iron House would not exist. From all of us at Guiding Light, clients and staff alike, God bless you and thank you so much for all of your support.
THIS MEANS THAT ANYONE WHO BELONGS TO CHRIST HAS BECOME A NEW PERSON. THE OLD LIFE IS GONE; A NEW LIFE HAS BEGUN!
2 CORINTHIANS 5:17