EVANS, Ga. (WJBF) – A local ministry wants to tap CSRA businesses in hopes of getting help with its scholarship program at its recovery home for women.

Women who rose from the depths of drug and alcohol addiction in the 143 Ministries program told NewsChannel 6 it was life changing, taking them from hopeless, back to functioning members of their communities. With more people overdosing now on drugs, the phones at Katherine’s Way continue to ring. And in order to offer the program at no cost, organizers created a 5K color run in hopes of getting funding.

“Almost two years ago now, I was at the end of my addiction and just so desperate,” said Crystal Eubanks, Katherine’s Way Housing Manager.

It was a time when Eubanks said she wanted life to end. But then, she turned on the TV.

“I saw the program on the midday news and I just started balling,” she said. “I was like, there’s no hope for me. I don’t see a way out.”

She watched the NewsChannel 6 special, From Drugs to Dreams, featuring 143 Ministries and its recovery homes Immanuel House for men and Katherine’s Way for women back in 2019. A few weeks later, she was admitted at no cost thanks to the scholarship program. It’s an opportunity Ana Nobles said she wants for others.

“These are people just putting stuff together and saying this is what this is and that’s what a lot of people are ODing on. They think that they are getting opioids and they’re getting fentanyl.”

And Nobles said just a little bit of that drug disguised as press pills will kill you. She added Katherine’s Way is working to eliminate that danger, one person at a time, infusing the principles of Jesus Christ into the standard 12 step program in 90 days.

Brandy Perkins, Katherine’s Way Assistant Director explained, “After the 90 day period, they have the opportunity to go into our phase two, which is our transitional phase. That basically teaches them how to live life in sobriety and work, pay rent, become responsible and a living part of society.”

“You’re giving someone back their parent. You’re giving someone back their daughter. You’re giving someone back their friend,” said 2020 Katherine’s Way graduate Robin Guerrero.

She walked into the recovery program in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic last June, a time when Nobles said a lot of people fell into depression and reached for drugs.

Guerrero added, “It was like the drug addict’s dream because I could hide, do my drugs and no one would know, which is a lie.”

And it’s a walk Guerrero said she’s done before and failed until now.

She said, “It gave me back so much more than just sobriety. They led me to Jesus here. The timing on how this thing is set up is so amazing.”

The Miles of Miracles Color Run 5K takes place September 25 at 9:00 a.m. at Savannah Rapids Pavilion. Sponsorships range from $250 to $1,000 dollars.

Photojournalist: Gary Hipps