Narconon Arrowhead 2004 Anniversary Attendees
Narconon Arrowhead Celebrates
15 Years of Saving Lives in Oklahoma
During National Recovery Month
It was quite a night of acknowledgment for this center on Lake Eufaula in the heart of America’s Great Plains--a key to one city, "Narconon Day" proclaimed in two others, one thousand event attendees giving standing ovations. Narconon Arrowhead drug rehabilitation center now maintains capacity enrollment with over 200 students and 160 staff to care for them. State Senator Richard Lerblance (right) recognized this by saying, "Programs like this can make a huge difference in the state. Narconon has been a great partner and a great asset to Southeast Oklahoma."
Executive Directory Narconon Arrowhead
Master of Ceremonies, Gary Smith, Executive Director of Narconon Arrowhead, opened the celebration, saying:
"Fortunately there is a bright side to this dark alley of substance abuse, and that is called hope. And when enough of us have hope we will find a way to help solve this problem. It is in the spirit of helping to save lives, reuniting families and making stronger communities, that we are gathered here tonight."
September is National Drug and Alcohol Addiction Recovery Month, which is sponsored each year by the federal agency, SAMSHA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.) This year’s theme is 'Join the Voices of Recovery Now.'
The stars for the evening were the staff members who are working hard on a daily basis to save the lives of those who are affected by drugs.
Bobby Newman, himself a graduate of the Narconon® program, was formerly addicted to methamphetamines. He is now a staff member, giving back to society what society really needs most. Bobby spoke about how addicts take drugs as a solution to a personal problem:
"We deal with several hundred individuals a day calling in, writing in, or coming to our doorstep to get help. When the situation hits a boiling point--when the family's 'had enough' and 'this is the last straw' and they pick up the phone, I am a member of the team of people who answers their call. Our drug-free approach makes Narconon unique. You have got to get the person off the drug ---get the drugs out of his body---to bring up his awareness, his actual consciousness, in order to help him or her find out that problem he is trying to solve by taking the drugs."
He also stressed the importance of drug prevention in changing conditions in the community. Bobby, along with other Narconon Arrowhead drug prevention specialists, delivered presentations throughout the region to over 43,000 kids last year.
J.J. Bush, graduate of the program, is now withdrawing addicts on a daily basis. "You can imagine what kind of shape people are in when they arrive: in bad physical shape, undernourished, etc... So what do we do?" He told about how Narconon gives them a good orientation to the program so they understand how it will help them. They are told that they won’t be given more drugs, such as methadone or anti-depressants. They are provided with a comfortable environment and the deficiencies then get handled with good nutrition, vitamins, plenty of rest, exercise, and medical attention as needed. It is now a well-documented fact that much of the stress frequently associated with the withdrawal process is actually caused by vitamin deficiencies.
Kathy Gomes, graduate of the program, is now an instructor for the Life Skills portion of the Narconon program. What is it like to help someone start mastering his life?
"When the person has made it through withdrawal and the sauna cleansing successfully, then what? Getting here is the first step. Getting off drugs through an effective withdrawal and sauna program is the second step. The third step is called Life Skills. ... These Life Skills courses have the effect of bringing the person more into the present, from which point he begins to see a future for himself—a future of his own choosing. And I am testimony to its workability, for there was a time when I was, myself, addicted to drugs."
President of Narconon International
"Besides getting people off drugs for life, Arrowhead is also our international staff training center," says Clark Carr, President of Narconon International, who gave an overview of the Narconon network's expansion over the years. For instance, among the current international trainees are three Jordanian police officers who will soon return to open the first Narconon center in an Arabic-speaking country.
Reverend James McLaughlin of the Ward Community AME Church in Houston, and his wife Cleo, who works with the United Black Fund of Texas, shared their story of how they trained at Arrowhead. They are now helping people to come off drugs in their newly opened (August 2004) Narconon center in Houston Texas.
Mayor Danny Arterberry
There is much to celebrate with Narconon Arrowhead's 15 years in Oklahoma and September being National Recovery month. But most particularly, Narconon of Oklahoma is proudest of its more than 2,100 graduates who have gone on to lead ethical and productive lives.