Ice ‘can happen to anyone’
THE couple who operate a Terranora rehabilitation centre hope Thursday's community forum on crystal methamphetamine use in the Tweed will make headway in tackling the issue.
Vibe Care founders David and Louise Nahi said the forum should bolster community awareness around the issue.
"This ice problem can happen to anyone you know," Mr Nahi said.
"We've got people from all walks of life, from professionals to people who are unfortunate enough to be homeless."
Mr Nahi hoped the forum would encourage more people to recognise they need help and be willing to seek it.
"I think most people who are caught in addiction, they've got family who are willing to give more help to these people than they realise," he said.
"We have a whole lot of loving friends and family who help make the first call or help to transport people to where they need to be."
Mr Nahi said Vibe Care, which is approaching its first anniversary of operation, would have a representative at the forum.
"Ice is so available that it makes it a dangerous drug for anyone," Mr Nahi said.
Vibe Care, which helps men facing a range of issues, has six men approaching graduation. Along with coming clean, they're preparing for employment.
"They've broken free from their addiction, they've gained their dignity back," Mr Nahi said.
"It's just great to have some guys who were basically on death row really turn their lives around and find hope for a better future."
Ms Nahi said the centre, which had a growing waiting list, hoped to expand and also open a women's centre.
Tweed mum Nicole, who tackled her ice addiction in a Thai rehabilitation centre, plans to attend the forum.
Her story drove home the fact that not all addicts fit the stereotype; she held up a job during the depths of her struggle.
She knows first-hand how frightening it can be to seek help, and hoped the forum would encourage others like her to defy the fear of stigma and break free.
"I think it's a really positive step towards looking at recovery for people (facing) addiction," she said.
"It's a really positive thing for the community to do, to look at this in a way that we've got to do something about it."
She said the Tweed was "rife" with ice use and hoped the forum would impart the region with a broader understanding of addiction.
The Breaking the Ice forum, organised by the NSW Government and the Australian Drug Foundation, will take place at Tweed Heads Civic Centre on Thursday night. Doors open 6pm for a 6.30pm start. The forum will run for two hours.
For more info, visit adf.org.au/breakingtheice.