When a teenager has a drug problem the whole family suffers.
Three Dimensional Life, a residential treatment facility in Gainesville, gives families an opportunity to rebuild the loving environment and trust that was lost to drug use.
For 10 months, students at Three Dimensional Life, boys age 14-20, live and work on a 55-acre Christmas tree farm. Through a faith-based curriculum, the students at Three Dimensional Life learn how to overcome their problems with addiction and behavior and develop a sense of self-worth.
“Out main goal is helping teens discover their life’s purpose, “ said Greg Brooks, executive director.
The boys will participate in regular character building adventures. The adventures include mountain climbing, kayaking and hiking. Through the adventures the boys develop a sense of trust for each other and themselves. Brooks said he wants the boys to see “they can have fun without drugs.”
Three Dimensional Life focuses on more than just individual treatment. Parents and family members are invited to attend a family recovery class and visit their sons weekly.
“We try to help build an environment where they can grow a healthy relationship because it’s pretty broken by the time they get here,” Brooks said.
It is becoming more commonplace for families to be affected by drug use. Brooks said the biggest issue he sees is prescription drug abuse. He said one in five high school students admitted to using a prescription drug without having been prescribed the drug.
“It’s a problem that doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon,” Brooks said.
Brooks said many of the boys in the program are addicted to more than just the substance.
“Many of the boys in our group are addicted to the lifestyle rather than the drug,” Brooks said.
Families are calling Three Dimensional Life every day asking them to help their children. Brooks said he has received more than 50 phone calls from families this month. Many of the people who need help have to find it somewhere else because the program only has enough room for 16 boys at a time.
Three Dimensional Life plans to make a few additions to its program. It is in the beginning stages of building another cabin to hold more students and hopes to be able to house more than 30 students in three years.
“We’ve continued to look at building a girls facility, but we’ve had to put those plans on hold because of the economy,” Brooks said.
Three Dimensional Life does not receive any federal or state funding. Which means they have to raise $350,000 on their own. Brooks said most treatment facilities get federal grants to keep them in operation. “Because of where we are and who we want to be” they don’t want the restrictions that would come with federal funding, he said.
On Thursday night, Three Dimensional Life held its annual dinner with Gov. Nathan Deal as keynote speaker.