By Judi Currie email@example.com
Posted Apr. 22, 2016 at 4:58 PM
SOMERSWORTH — The Sober Sisters Recovery facility is getting assistance from Strafford Community Action Program (CAP) in the form a $27,000 weatherization project.
Marybeth Schofield and Mone’ Cassier are leasing the Malley Farm from the City of Somersworth to operate a sober living facility committed to women seeking recovery from alcohol and drug addiction.
According to Cassier, with opiate addiction long-term treatment is imperative and the women need a safe place where they can rebuild their lives.
“The women need a solid foundation before they integrate back into their children’s lives,” Cassier said. “This house is based on getting the women in motherhood shape. We are recycling human beings here, instead of just forgetting about them.”
Betsy Andrews Parker, CAP CEO, said while they do not provide treatment for substance abuse there is a role they can play in the current opiate crisis.
“We have lots of federal funding to leverage,” Andrews Parker said. “We usually do homes, but we asked for a waiver to do this facility because of the number of people who need help.”
Andrews Parker said the weatherization will reduce the overall energy burden so Sober Sisters Recovery will be able to put more money back into programming to help the women who will be living there.
“This is what we can do, and we are hopeful more people in the community will step forward to help Sober Sisters,” Andrews Parker said. “People need options, they are asking for help and this facility can provide what they need.”
Zach McDonald, weatherization auditor for CAP, said he determines the scope of a project and then talks to funders to try to pull everything together. He looks to lower the energy usage and increase the comfort, health and safety in the home.
“We’re putting better insulation in the attic, lowering the amount of space that needs to be heated,” McDonald said. “We will replace some windows and install a new high-end heating system.”
The new heating system is being funded by CAP partners Unitil and the Federal DOE Office of Energy and Planning.
CAP subcontractor Newell and Crathern, of Loudon, was installing insulation and First Class Heating, of Milton, was preparing to install the new heating system, which will cost about $17,000.
“Eversource has been amazing; this is part of their program to help low and moderate income individuals reduce their energy use,” Andrews Parker said.
Cassier said the improvements CAP is providing will allow them to charge lower rent for the women who are starting their lives over.
Schofield and Cassier said they were inspired to open a sober home after a friend died in May from heroin addiction.
Schofield works for the Department of Labor and has a background in nonprofit management. She worked for Community Action and has experience in grant writing and in the weatherization program.
Cassier is a small business owner who volunteers at the Therapeutic Community, a treatment program at the Strafford County House of Corrections for drug addicts and alcoholics.
They have also received help from others in the recovery community and hope to open the facility in June.
ORIGINAL ARTICLE HERE: http://www.fosters.com/article/20160422/NEWS/160429716