Fleming House: Legacy celebration planned Aug. 18

Fleming House, the big, yellow house that love built in Columbiana County, has been aiding women in recovery for 15 years, providing a stable environment for them and their children for up to 18 months while the women develop individualized plans for their lives, obtain the education they need to realize their goals, and collect the life skills tools they need for the healthy recovery they desire, and participation in their communities.

Fleming House is in the neighborhood behind McDonald’s. Everyone who enters its doors must agree to the house rules. Everyone who enters does not hold to their agreements and has to leave. But many, the ones who want a better way of life for their children and themselves, are committed to staying, living by the rules – including not dating for a year to give them time to learn about themselves, working toward their goals and appreciating the hand up to a healthy, contented life. These women know they have a lot of work to do, that they have a journey to make to regain the trust of the people in their lives.

This transitional housing program is for homeless, recovering women and their children and has served 156 women and more than 300 children. Ten apartments, an on-site child day care center, a multi-purpose room with a kitchenette, offices and public space comprise the home. Rent is based on their income. Services available to them include case management, vocational development or schooling, aftercare, and focus groups around issues like relapse prevention, parenting, anger management, self-esteem, codependence and life skills. Community support groups (Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, etc.) meet there daily.

Last year the grandmother of one of the graduates said Courtney had been to several 90-day rehab programs but the program at Fleming House gave her time to work her way through things in her life, to work on herself, and give her a better chance at living independently.

Eighteen months seems like a long time. But Courtney’s grandmother, concerned about rumored budget cuts, expressed the hope that the program would continue. FRC was committed then, and is committed now, to continuing the safe, affordable, drug-free transitional housing and specialized services.

Fleming House was built with funding from the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services and the Ohio Housing Finance Agency and continues to be supported by OhioMHAS, billing insurance, and Medicaid for services and the Columbiana County Mental Health and Recovery Services Board.

Fleming House was dedicated to women’s advocate, the late Luceille Fleming, who as executive director of ODADAS which is now known as OhioMHAS, “established a reputation as a national leader in the delivery of quality, cost-effective addiction prevention, treatment and recovery support services.”

Fleming House will celebrate its 15th year from 4 to 7 p.m. Aug. 18. The public is invited to hear guest speakers, tour the facility, meet past and present residents, and enjoy refreshments during this time. For more information, call 330-420-3760.

Addiction has no address, but Family Recovery Center does. For more information about the education, prevention and treatment programs for substance abuse and related behavioral issues, contact the agency at 964 N. Market St., Lisbon; phone, 330-424-1468; or e-mail, info@familyrecovery.org. FRC is funded, in part, by United Way of Northern Columbiana County.

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