When you have seen rock bottom, a successful recovery becomes that much sweeter.
Women participating in GraceWay Recovery Center’s residential drug and alcohol recovery program have new hope these days thanks to their involvement with The Bread House and Granary in Albany. Those who have successfully completed the first six months of the program at the residential facility are able to make the transition to living on their own in GraceWay’s apartment building. Along with that transition comes the option of working outside the center.
The Bread House provides the perfect environment for these women and two to three report for duty each day. They are tasked with everything from tending the wheat grass grown on site to baking and packaging the fresh baked products, said Jennifer Hanington, 27, manager of The Bread House and former GraceWay resident.
“It just gives them more responsibility and teaches them how to live on their own again as part of the community,” said Hanington, who was addicted to drugs and alcohol for 11 years before seeking help at GraceWay. “It teaches you life on life’s terms.”
GraceWay now operates The Bread House and benefits from all profits made there. Hanington gives each woman working at The Bread House a specific responsibility to tend to every day they work. “When you feel responsible for something you feel important,” she said. “The ultimate goal is for the bread store to sustain GraceWay.”
The Bread House grinds Montana hard, red wheat daily, turning it into healthy products such as bread loaves in a variety of flavors, energy/fiber bars, cinnamon rolls and cookies. In addition, local customers have the benefit of some new products, such as the popular zucchini and pineapple loaf. Freshly milled flour provides vitamin E, B-complex vitamins, fiber and complex carbohydrates, a natural appetite suppressant.
“We continue to experiment with that wonderful flour and tweak recipes to make them healthier,” said Liz Dixon. “You just wouldn’t believe the taste and how it enhances those old time family recipes.”
Just in time for the holidays, and in an effort to “go green,” The Bread House is offering their new jute tote that they will fill with baked goods and ship anywhere in the world.
Products of The Bread House range from $6-$10 and each package includes a scripture, providing a little nourishment for the soul as well, said Hanington, who now lives on her own and is fully self-supporting, having completed the program at GraceWay a year ago.
“For so long we’ve lived so selfishly, thinking it’s all about us and what can I do for me. GraceWay teaches that it’s not all about us, but how God can use us to his purpose,” she said.
GraceWay Wish List 2010
- 30 twin white sheets
- 15 twin heavy duty mattress pads
- 15 white towels
- 15 white wash cloths
- 2 Bissell lightweight vacuum cleaners
- 1 heavy duty shop vac
- 1 set of commercial pots and pans
- 1 set of glass bake ware
- 1 set of baking/muffin cookie sheets
- 1 electric can opener
- 1 set of matching coffee mugs
- A set of 30 dinner glasses
- Dish rags
- Dish towels
- Cleaning rags
- Toilet paper
- Paper towels
- Gain detergent
- Copy paper
- Hewlett Packard 02 all color ink
- White outdoor chairs
- Umbrella for picnic table
Four white six-foot folding tables
In addition to the fresh goods they bake and sell at The Bread House, the women recently began selling their products Thursday through Saturday at Livi & Co, an antique market located at 3105 Ledo Road in Albany.
The partnership allows for GraceWay women to gain additional exposure to the community, while providing shoppers easy access to the baked products. The women hope to offer sandwich lunches to shoppers at Livi & Co. in the near future.
Like any non-profit, GraceWay struggles to secure funding each year and the need is always great. Donations are currently down by 60 percent, said Dixon, adding that their top annual fundraiser, a dinner with Paula Deen that nets one-third of GraceWay’s budget, did not take place this year.
“The local community is tapped, but we’re thankful for everything we’ve been given,” she said, noting that this time of year is peak for the volume of women looking for help with their addictions.
Out of gratitude for the help they’ve received, current residents have asked donors to forgo the individual gifts often sent to them for Christmas in exchange for items that will benefit the entire facility and future residents.
Items on their “Ask List” include: 30 sets of white twin bed sheets, 15 heavy duty twin mattress pads, 30 white bath towels and wash cloths, commercial pots and pans, assorted kitchenware and two Bissell lightweight vacuum cleaners. The full wish list is available on their website, www.thebreadhouse.com.
GraceWay Recovery Center offers a six month to two year residential program for women with drug and/or alcohol addiction. For more information about GraceWay, call (229) 446-7800 or visit them online at www.gracewayrecovery.com.
The Bread House is at 1902 Dawson Road in Albany. The store is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
K.K. Snyder is a freelance writer and editor based in the Albany area. With over 20 years
in the industry, she writes for a number of magazines and newspapers around the country and
has published hundreds of articles, with topics ranging from travel and real estate to art
and personality profiles. In addition, she is the author of Frommer’s Atlanta travel guidebook,
which she rewrites every two years.