If plans to set up a women-only drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre in the Maitland area come to fruition, there could be renewed hope for many families who are at their wit’s end watching a loved one throw their life away in a daze.
Plans are afoot to provide 25 beds in the next four years and begin a similar program to The Glenn rehab centre which has proved a success on the Central Coast.
The group behind the push is lobbying the federal government for $3.2 million to help set up the new centre.
If the government is serious about reducing drug and alcohol abuse in rural communities, it should have a hard think about the potential good this initiative could do in the Hunter.
It could give those who are at the bottom of a dark hole the chance to climb out and become valuable members of society who contribute to their communities in a positive way.
While there are other addiction and crisis centres near the Hunter, the only women-only facility specialising solely in drug and alcohol abuse between Maitland and Sydney is on the Central Coast.
Experts say the women-only model is essential in removing the distractions that can appear in facilities open to both sexes.
Coral Hennessy has been trying to help her 49-year-old daughter fight alcoholism for two decades.
She has watched her daughter’s prosperous future transform into one lived mostly inside mental health facilities.
So when Ms Hennessy says Hunter women addicted to drugs and alcohol are falling through the cracks, she speaks with authority.
Providing funding for a women-only drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre in the Hunter would be a worthwhile way for the federal government to spend money fighting drug and alcohol abuse.