BREWER, Maine (NEWS CENTER)-- The headlines lately have been dominated by stories of pharmacy robberies, drug arrests, and the like.
Those who are on the front lines in this battle say that the only way to reverse this trend is to invest more in treatment programs. That's exactly what happened Wednesday in Brewer.
The Bangor Area Recovery Network, also known as BARN cut the ribbon Wednesday on its new recovery center on Center Street in Brewer.
It's 7 thousand square feet of space, with a lounge area, conference room, offices, and a kitchenette.
It's a place where people who are in recovery, can go that is safe, warm, and welcoming.
It's a place where people can go for 12 step meetings, social events, or to just talk to somebody.
Several local and state dignitaries were there, including Penobscot County Sheriff Glenn Ross, and DHHS Commissioner Mary Mayhew.
BARN has started a capital campaign to raise money for the center. If you would like to donate you can contact Bangor Area Recovery Network.
One of the people who spoke at Today's ribbon cutting is Bill Lowenstein, a man who has been in recovery himself for the last 30 years. He is willing to share his story because he believes it will help the public understand the issue better. His biggest message is that substance abuse is a disease that can be treated.
"Often times what happens is society or communities see people who never make it into recovery so in a sense they see the failures or the negative consequences, he said. "There are many of us in recovery from drug and alcohol addiction who lead positive lives who are productive in our community."
Bill is one of those people in Recovery. His started 30 years ago-in May of 1982.
"I'm a much different person than I was 30 years ago and for the better, i'm a better father, husband, boss. All the things that have improved as the growth process as a result of my recovery process.
Bill drove from Auburn to Brewer to talk about the importance of a place like the BARN recovery center.
"Here you get a new chance to find a new social network and find new friends and do new things that you've never done before... it gives a message that recovery is ok and that recovery is possible."