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Drug and alcohol center opening for homeless population

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Amarillo, Texas - Amarillo's growing homeless population will now have a place to turn to for those facing drug and alcohol addiction.

Amarillo Recovery from Alcohol and Drugs will open it's doors Thursday. It will be the first treatment facility of it's kind in Amarillo since the 90s. ARAD's focus is however for the panhandle's growing homeless population.

Once a year agencies get together to discuss how to better serve the homeless population in Amarillo. Something that has been a main concern for many years, treatment for those addicted to drugs and alcohol.

"Usually right up there at the top is the alcohol and drug issues that are with the homeless population," Ann Sanders, Downtown Women's Center supervisor says.

There has been no program in Amarillo to serve those in need.

"The closest inpatient program we've had has been in Lubbock at the Managed Care. So we have desperately needed a facility like this because we've had to send people to Lubbock for treatment," Sanders says.

We spoke with a resident of the Downtown Women's Center today who had to go to Lubbock for her treatment.

"I just couldn't find any help here. So I did have to go, I had to do my treatment in Lubbock, which took me away from my family. I couldn't have done it without it. I tried several times on my own because there was nothing here," the resident says.

She says this program in Amarillo will be a blessing. Other's who have no where to live and no where to turn will now have a place to go for help.

"I had to get the phone book out, and actually went down the list and there just wasn't any treatment here. And so I just kind of wandered off and got more lost into my addiction thinking well I'm stuck I can't get any help. I had to go to Lubbock," she says.

She went on to tell us leaving her children behind was one of the hardest things she had to do. Having somewhere to get help and to keep families together is needed.

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