ALTUS, OK (KSWO) - A soon-to-open nonprofit in Altus is working to help women battling drug and alcohol addiction by providing housing, counseling and jobs.
Drugs, alcohol and domestic violence are huge problems for countless men and women across Southwest Oklahoma. That includes Staci Kirby, who is now the Executive Director for the Amethyst House.
"Two and a half years ago I was on this news channel, I was part of a drug bust in Jackson County. I participated in a program like this, I had to go to Tulsa. Inside Out Re-entry Services let me become involved with them. They mentored and guided me through it. I'm now a productive member of society. I have my children back in my life. I have a relationship with God that has made all of it possible. It can change your life. That's our goal," Kirby said.
Kirby said when she needed help, there was nothing available in southwest Oklahoma. She hopes the Amethyst House can change that.
"We're going to provide sober living, we'll have GED services, we're going to help them get birth certificates. There's going to be a lot of things going on here. Life skills classes, budget classes, we have a lot of volunteers coming in. The women will attend church, celebrate recovery, step studies. This will help them by giving them a good place to start and meeting requirements for drug court, probation, parole, or just getting their lives back on track," Kirby said.
The Amethyst House will be able to house 22 women at any given time allowing each to participate in the program for 12 months. Everyone staying in the home will be required to have a job, but they will help you find one.
"We've had a lot of local businesses step up and be willing to hire these women for jobs. So, they're going to learn to be self-sufficient. When they leave here, they'll have to pay their own way. That's part of recovery, learning to be financially responsible for yourself. We'll work with them on it, but they will have to pay rent. It's just part of being a responsible adult and member of society," Kirby said.
That rent will be $100 per week, which will cover housing, utilities, food and clothing. Kirby says she is living proof that transition houses like the Amethyst House work and she is excited to use her story to help others.
"Drug addicts and alcoholics struggle enough. They don't need people condemning them or judging them. They need your prayers and they need to be loved right where they are. I was there so I understand what that can mean and how life changing that can be. I'm excited to be able to provide that and walk that walk with them in the future," Kirby said.
The Amethyst House is a fully certified 501 C3 nonprofit.
If you want to learn more, you can contact Kirby through Facebook here.