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West Deptford drug addiction group gets Washington Township man to Florida for recovery
Greg Adomaitis | South Jersey Times Gloucester County Times
WEST DEPTFORD TWP. — For some, the road to ruin is paved in pills and needles, but the route to recovery in this case won’t be a road — it will be an airplane flight to Florida.
Following this fall’s launch of “The Meeting” drug recovery group in West Deptford, organizers met the sister of a struggling Washington Township man who would find himself homeless in Camden one day and at a rehabilitation facility in Florida the next.
“Addiction will take you out there,” Greg Maurer, who helped launch the Saturday evening programs at The Lord’s Vineyard Church, said of Camden.
The 32-year-old patient must remain anonymous due to confidentially agreements, but Maurer said he was in a dark place: Xanax, heroin and methadone addictions among other problems.
“He was not in good shape,” said Maurer, a recovering addict himself and nationally-certified drug/alcohol interventionist.
The man’s sister caught word of the West Deptford meeting and attended a recent one, eventually asking what could be done to help her brother. That set in motion a chain of events eventually leading to a flight out of Philadelphia on Dec. 20 and at least 30 days of help.
“I’ll match your willingness,” Maurer told the man. “If you call me every single day and I know you’re serious, I’ll get you a scholarship to Florida.”
He doesn’t want people to think they have to “jump through hoops” to receive help, but it is important that rehab facilities take on people who are ready to recover.
Two weeks later, the two spoke again in Camden after Maurer had been organizing the flight behind the scenes.
The “scholarship” at Believe Treatment Center, in West Palm Beach, Florida, could cost around $25,000, Maurer said.
“Most people don’t realize that most insurance will cover the cost of treatment and in the case someone doesn’t possess that luxury, that’s when the work starts,” he added.
Approximately 20 million Americans are currently dealing with behavioral or addictive disorders and of that figure, less than 10 percent are receiving treatment, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
While the facilities may take a loss in accepting those without the means to pay in full, sponsor financing, fundraisers, client contributions or other discounts help to foot the bills, according to rehabilitation-center.org.
According to Maurer, the man’s father stepped up to pay for the roughly $350 plane ticket. Thanks to Maurer’s own outreach and connections, Believe Treatment Center will not be billing the man.
What happens from there depends on the level of commitment from the former Washington Township man. All bases of recovery could be on the table and sober-living houses, made up of six to eight other recovering individuals, could be the man’s next step to recovery.
“He’s got to want to get involved,” Maurer said.
For others in need, Maurer said he’s always available by cell phone at 609-221-9645.
Maurer’s in need, too. There aren’t enough options for treatment in New Jersey, he said, so residents or elected officials who would like to get behind his effort are also encouraged to reach out.
Additional resources can be found at www.addictionfrontline.com. “The Meeting” is held every Saturday at the Lord’s Vineyard Church, located at 301 Colonial Drive, in West Deptford. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.