COVID-19 created the perfect storm for addiction. Drug use escalated due to limited social interaction and the closure of schools and businesses.
Isaiah House Treatment Center, a faith-based residential and outpatient treatment program, never stopped making room for those who needed help.
“Isolation is not good for someone dealing with addiction,” said Isaiah House President Mike Cox. “Since COVID-19, we’ve cared for 800 individuals. People were unemployed. Schools shut down. Children were at home, and there was heightened stress and anxiety. People were overdosing, and there was no one to administer NARCAN to save their lives.”
Though Isaiah House, a partner of Southeast Christian Church, has 156 beds for male clients, there is never enough room for women. Right now, 29 women are on the waiting list. But not for long.
A new 28-bed residence for women is opening in Versailles, Kentucky, to add to the Lisa Walker Center in Harrodsburg that has 16 beds.
Some residents are pregnant. Kentucky has the third highest rate in United States of opioid use among mothers at delivery.
Kelli Kinney, who provides admissions support at Isaiah House, said addiction changes everything for babies before they are born.
“All that could go wrong has gone wrong with these women,” Kinney said. “We believe it will make an incredible difference to care for these women.”
Additional beds will allow women to come into the program the same day they call for help.
“When someone needs help, they need it that day,” Cox added. “We try to get them in immediately. If they walk away, we wonder if we will see them alive the next day.”
Everything changed for Katelyn Sutherland since she entered the 28-day program at Isaiah House last May. She had been dealing with drug abuse and alcoholism for years. After completing the program, she stayed another four months in the Sober Living program and now works with women coming into the program.
“Women are broken when they come through the door,” she said. “The light starts to come on between weeks one and three. I walked in the door ready to turn my life around. That happened as I built my relationship with Jesus. At Isaiah House, they loved me back to life. Now I run on God’s will for my life, not mine.”
Compassionate, effective treatment is the goal at Isaiah House. No one is devalued due to their addiction.
“Discipleship begins day one,” Cox said. “We pour into them, identify the gifts God has given them and connect them with a vocation. We offer education, training and a job.”
In the last year, 150 Isaiah House clients have been baptized.
The nationally accredited program provides treatment that includes Celebrate Recovery, chemical counseling and real hope. There are doctors and nurses on staff.
“We are not just faith-based,” said Cox. “We are unashamedly Christ-centered. The absolute essential key is Christ. A relationship with the Lord brings healing, forgiveness and hope.”