December 07, 2019
Midcoast Latest News | Essex St. Death | Bangor Metro | Peter Vigue | Today's Paper

A new sober living home for women is opening in Camden, after speedy burst of donations

Lauren Abbate | BDN
Lauren Abbate | BDN
In just one month, the Midcoast Recovery Coalition raised the funds needed to purchase a residence in Camden, with the hope of turning the home into a place for women who are recovering from addiction.

In just one month, the Midcoast Recovery Coalition raised the funds needed to purchase a residence in Camden, with the hope of turning the home into a place for women who are recovering from addiction.

The organization, which works in the midcoast area to help those who are struggling with substance use disorder, initially had until March to raise $160,000 for the purchase of a former assisted living facility on Washington Street. But on Dec. 3, another buyer expressed interest in the property, and the fundraising deadline was moved to Jan. 2.

Midcoast Recovery Coalition director Ira Mandel said the group received donations and pledges from about 400 people during the month-long fundraising push. The sale is expected to close on Jan. 18.

“I was blown away, honestly,” Mandel said Friday. “It’s truly a miracle. And really, what the miracle is is community support. This is 100 percent donations.”

Last summer, the coalition opened a recovery residence for men in Rockland. The home can house four men who are looking for a safe, substance-free living environment. Renovations are being done on the house so more men can live there.

The Midcoast Recovery Coalition has made providing substance-free residences a priority as it works with state agencies and other groups to combat Maine’s opiate addiction epidemic.

Mandel said after the men’s house opened, it was clear that a similar opportunity was needed for women in the area. If the closing and zoning processes all go as planned, Mandel said they hope to open the residence this summer, with space for six women and three children.

The Washington Street property had been a senior living residence since 1898, when it opened specifically for women. In the 1980s, the assisted living home also opened its doors to men.

Mandel feels it is fitting that the home will continue to serve women through its next iteration.

 



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