Thanks To Samaritans

Readers write

December 11, 1991

From: Edward Bogdan

Linthicum

On a rainy Monday afternoon, Dec. 2, my father's car was parked on the shoulder of I-695 with a flat tire. It wasn't a day conducive for an 81 (year-old) adult to change a tire.

As my father waited inhis car, a man of Italian or Greek origin stopped and asked my father if he needed assistance. Needless to say, my father replied, "Yes."He told my father to sit in his car and proceeded to change the tire.

A few minutes later, an Afro-American man driving a tow truck stopped to give assistance. Working together, the two men were able to change the tire and allowed my father to continue on his way home.

Neither man asked for money. I know in my heart that these two men will be rewarded. The gift they gave to my father was the gift of kindness and compassion for another human being.

These men are the good Samaritans. I don't know their names, their religious beliefs, their political affiliation, or their stand on

any of the issues that are before our nation.

Their act of giving tells me that they care. To that I say, thank you.

MARLEY CREEK UPDATE

From: Mary Russo

President

Marley Waste Coalition

I was happy to see that (staff writer) John Morris did an article on the Rock Creek dredging and proposed dredging projects for Marley and other creeks. However, since John did not attend the meeting held for that update, he was not aware of the urgency of the Marley Creek situation as it pertains to the comment period open until Dec. 20th. It was made clear at that meeting that we need supportive letters to the corps to expedite the project. The importance of expediting the project is clear because of budget cuts and prioritizing the money for dredging.

Since our members have been dedicated to seeing the Marley Creek project move forward, it is quite important that your readers who are equally concerned be given the address of the corps and information needed to write to the corps to move this project.

The address is:

Department of the Army

U.S. Army Engineer District

Baltimore

Corps of Engineers

P.O. Box 1275

Baltimore, Md. 21203

RE: REC NABOP RS (A.A. County DPW/Marley Creek) Case 91-65542-6

REALITIES OF ADDICTION

From: Jennifer Keats

Community Liaison

Hope House

I have been employed as Hope House's community liaison since August.

My mainobjective has been to reduce the stigma that surrounds the alcoholics and addicts who come to Hope House to learn how to live an abstinent life. Second, I urge local businesses, community organizations, andindividuals to make donations to Hope House to ensure that we have enough money to remain operational.

As I have discovered, it is easier to convince people to make a one-time donation than to change their attitudes about drunks and drug users.

Hope House was created eight years ago by several recovering alcoholics and addicts who realized that by the time addicts and alcoholics reach out for help, they no longer have the resources to afford the private health sector.

Until I was aware of this fact, I had my own stigmas to deal with. I thought I knew what the typical alcoholic and addict looked like. I had seen winos on the street. I had occasionally given money to a passing beggar who reeked of whiskey. It seemed obvious that stereotype this was what I would find at Hope House.

What I did not expect to find were people who wanted to stop drinking or drugging so they could be better mothers or fathers.

I did not expect to find people who wanted to learn to live an abstinent life so they could go back to work and back to school.

I did not expect to find people.

One of the main difficulties I have come up against is helping others understand this fact.

The advocation of a treatment center is not a warm and fuzzy concept that our community wants to cuddle up to. Many community members assume they already understand the treatment field. In fact, I have learned that people often do one or two things when asked about their concept of the alcoholics and addicts who seek treatment at a non-profit center: They assume they are unaffected because they know no drunks or drug users, or they conjure up that stereotypical image mentioned earlier.

Therefore, this past Friday, I openedthe doors of Hope House to the community, to give people the opportunity to discover what happens before, during and after drug treatment.

A panel of five Hope House graduates spoke about why they soughtresidential treatment, what they learned during their stay at Hope House, and how they coped on returning to the community.

Those who were there said that listening to the alumni speak was truly an eye-opening experience.

I intend to continue planning luncheons and other events for the community. I see every day why non-profit treatmentsaves lives and our society money. By continuing to involve community members in these events, no one will have to take my word for this.People can see for themselves.

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