DRI-Dock celebrates open house in Cambridge

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Dorchester Banner/Paul Clipper
Staff members from DRI-Dock Recovery and Wellness Center welcome the community into the center. From left: Robert Hodge, Purnell Flamer, Kathy Roe, John Winslow, and Charlie Roe.

CAMBRIDGE — The DRI-Dock Recovery and Wellness Center on Ocean Gateway celebrated with an open house on July 16, opening its doors to welcome the community and spread awareness of the DRI-Dock. “DRI” is short for Dorchester Recovery Initiative, and in their own words, they “promote personal recovery for all, no matter what path one takes to recovery. We are comprised of folks in recovery, active and former treatment clients, family members, prevention & treatment professionals, faith-based groups, 12-Step group supporters, and concerned citizens.”

The DRI-Dock, in its inconspicuous building on the highway, is a place anyone who needs help can go to find a friendly face, a peer group, a sympathetic ear and help with practical matters. There are no forms to fill out, no Social Security number to give, just a place to go where people care.

“Dri-Dock is a wonderful, user friendly, non-institutional place where people can come to support their recovery,” Director John Winslow tell us. “We try to be as non-intrusive, as non-institutional as possible. We want to be as welcoming and non-judgemental as possible to anyone, whether they have been here a thousand times or this is the first time they have come through the door.”

We took the open house as an opportunity to learn about their services, as did many people from the community. The place was busy and bustling while we were there. Mr. Winslow filled us in on all the details.

“We have a number of our participants who come to Dri-Dock on a day-to-day basis for recovery services, we have many folks from our various partnerships throughout the community who are dropping in. Some of them are regulars, some are community members stopping by for their first time today, so we’re really thrilled with the turnout. One of our faith-based partners, Anchor Point, has ties with the local food bank and has brought a number of food items and beverages for our celebration.”

Basically, the DRI-Dock is a safe place for people to go, people who are having trouble with a variety of trauma. “We are offering anything we can that is going to support someone’s recovery effort,” John continued, “and of course this is all at no charge. We have a computer lab area, with five or six computers that people can use for recreation, they can use them for recovery research, developing their computer skills, perform job searches or create a resume. We also have 12-step meetings that go on here—alcoholics anonymous, narcotics anonymous. We’re starting an all-recovery meeting for anyone who has any kind of recovery needs, whether that’s somebody who has an addiction, someone with mental health issues, someone who has lost a loved one and has grieving issues that they’re dealing with. We also offer support to the LGTB folks.”

DRI-Dock is a place where people can help themselves get back on their feet, and frankly it’s not all about addicts and alcoholics.

“We’re also offering recovery support for a traditional problem here in Dorchester County, lack of employment. So we help try to hook up folks with employment, we have a bulletin board with job opportunities posted, we help them do searches on the computer, and word of mouth employment opportunities. If they have educational needs we can help them find support to get plugged back in to further their education. We can also help people with their housing needs and with transportation.

“We’re very excited about the prospects of starting out a recovery café here. We also have a plan to start a culinary art school here, to be able to serve the community in need some free and nutritious meals, but also as a workforce development strategy. We’d like to also offer catering to the local business community.”

The message is that DRI-Dock is the ultimate service resource in Cambridge. No one has to be alone, no one has to suffer in silence. The DRI-Dock is there to help formally or informally. It’s as simple as just having a place for people to grab a cup of coffee, sit down and chat with one of the staff or one of the other participants—or just hang out by themselves, watch TV, chill out and have a safe place to be.

DRI-Dock is at 206 Sunburst Highway in Cambridge, and open from 8 a.m. til 6 p.m., Monday through Friday. Their phone number is 410 228-3230.

Paul Clipper is the editor of the Dorchester Banner. He can be reached at pclipper@newszap.com.

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