BURLINGTON N.C. -- A group of men in Burlington are working hard to get and stay clean and sober. The Thanksgiving holiday is no exception.
"Of course I'd like to be home, with the family and everything," says Chuck Connelly.
Instead, Connelly is spending Turkey Day the men's home on Hall Ave. in Burlington. It's part of Residential Treatment Services of Alamance, or RTSA, an addiction treatment and recovery service serving Alamance County.
Connelly says his family supports him getting help for his alcohol addiction.
"I got tired of just living a lie, really," he says. "I just want to be happy."
He's not alone. All the other men sharing the meal with him are hoping for a better future.
"Purgatory. That's what I was in," says Quintin Alston, who is seeking treatment for a drug addiction. He's been at the home for two days.
"I want my life back. I want my family back."
Across from him is Tracy Waldo, also working to beat a drug addiction. He's learned to ask for help and be vocal about his problem.
"Grown men talking to each other is very therapeutic," Waldo explains. "And it helps a whole lot."
Johnny Jackson is one resident who's been there for almost a year.
"I'm thankful that I'm clean and sober," he says. "I'm thankful that I have a roof over my head. I know that it's coming to an end."
He's 10-months into his stay at Hall Ave. and is scheduled to leave at the end of December.
He's looking forward to spending next Thanksgiving with his family. He admits he's fearful to leave, but believes RTSA has equipped him with the tools he needs to stay clean and sober.
"I thank God that he didn't take his hands off of me because I could be dead and gone."
RTSA is a substance abuse and mental health facility in Alamance County. It runs 24/7 with an 8-bed detox program and various residential programs for men and women. They focus on long-term recovery, encouraging clients to participate in 12-step programs. For more information about RTSA, click here.
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