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New facility offers help and hope to young addicts

Chris Caya/wbfo news

A new place for young adults who are in recovery from addiction to drugs or alcohol is now open near U.B's South Campus in Buffalo. 

A ribbon for the facility, considered the first of its kind in Western New York, took place on Thursday.

"It's something that's very unique that wasn't around when I got sober," said Robert Morrow, program manager at
the  Young Adult Recovery Clubhouse. Morrow is 25 and says he stopped using drugs and alcohol nearly 5-years ago.

The clubhouse, which has been set up in a former church on Englewood near Main Street, is meant to help fill the gap in addiction treatment and prevention. According to Morrow, 18-to-21-year-olds will be able to hang out without drugs or alcohol and play board games, foosball,; or play music and make artwork.

One young man, a 19-year-old named Eric who has been sober about 18 months, says he plans to become a member. Eric says he never thought he'd be sharing his story about being a heroin addict.

"When I was fourteen, behind the movie theater, had my first drink, smoked my first joint," Eric recalled. 

"Then a few years later, who ever thought I'd be a prisoner to myself, in my room, not being able to stop doing drugs."    

Morrow says the clubhouse will provide lots of peer support.  

"After going through this whole process myself, I am so much freer, happier and driven than I ever was while I was using. And there were many points where I didn't think I was going to make it. But I was able to get through it because of the people around me and because of my faith."  
The clubhouse at 66 Englewood Avenue will also offer self-improvement workshops, education services and meals every day of the week.