Local program frees men from the grasp of addiction

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YADKINVILLE, N.C. -- Addiction can be a dark, dangerous and deadly. For many, escaping its grasp is something they can’t do alone.

“You’re the slave and it’s the master,” said Luke Money, a former addict, turned manager of Ministry at Alpha Acres in Yadkinville.

Alpha Acres is a drug and alcohol rehabilitation center tucked back in the country of Yadkin County. Since 1997, with the help of the Winston-Salem Rescue Mission, that have changed the lives of over 600 men.

“Sometimes they come straight from court, jail, prison,” Money said.

Many make the decision to come on their own, too.

“I was addicted to heroin for the last five years,” said Nickolas Jacobs, of Wilmington. “I have three beautiful sons and I realized my first thought was not about my family, it was about my selfish needs to get high.”

“I was living a very fast lifestyle. Selling a lot of drugs and using a lot more,” said Mark Puckett, of Madison. “Dropped all my classes in college and I was brought to my knees.”

For 12 months, the men spend their days breaking free from the shackles of addiction, with the support of each other.

“A lot of the guys bond together because they come from a common background,” Money said.

Whether it be chopping wood, growing vegetables, playing football, or working out, these men re-learn how to live life without drugs or alcohol.

“Try to create an environment here where they can recover spiritually, physically and mentally,” Money said.

The men also have classes five days a week where they learn to live with addiction and those who don’t have a high school diploma can earn their GED.

“So it gives them responsibility, whether it’s cutting the grass, weed eating, splitting wood,” Money said.

When they’re done, some of the men even stay at Alpha Acres to help those who were once in their shoes.

“Being a pain pill and heroin IV user, it wouldn’t have been long where I would have either been in prison or dead,” Money said.

“I don’t know that I’ve ever been this happy, really,” Jacobs said.

“It’s nice to be able to relax and have sober conversations and live happy,” Puckett added.

For more information on the program, click here.