REAL House will support men on their post-jail journeys

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The Recovering from Everyday Addictive Lifestyle (REAL) Program inside the Richmond City Justice Center now has another resource to keep men on the right path when they have been released from jail.

The REAL House, a partnership with Journey House: A Recovery & Wellness Resident Program, will allow men who have completed the REAL program behind bars to continue their rehabilitation and recovery through the same behavior modification model.

“The REAL House is a dream come true for us,” says Richmond Sheriff C.T. Woody. “This home will allow our male residents who do not have a place to go after release to have somewhere to lay their head and continue their rehabilitation.”

Sheriff Woody explains securing housing post-release is one of the major obstacles men have to overcome.

“Those that have nowhere to go when they leave a jail are that much more likely to return to their old ways and wind up back in jail.  This house will allow them to have a safe place to stay while they continue their recovery in a structured environment, continue their rehabilitation if they’re addicted to drugs, and find a job so that they can take back their lives and become contributing, responsible members of society,” he says.

Dr. Sarah Scarbrough, Sheriff’s Office Program Director, calls the REAL House a “wonderful compliment” to the REAL Program.

“We already have great relationships with many recovery programs in the community, however, adding this option is a needed answer due to continued housing shortages we face almost daily,” Scarbrough adds. “The REAL House will also provide community space downstairs for our activities, events, and our alumni meetings.”

Mike Tillem will lead daily operations at  The REAL House.

“We see this partnership as an investment in each individual, and we believe it will lower recidivism and raise the standard of recovery support services,” Tillem shares his hopes for this new housing option. “We are honored to walk beside Sheriff Woody and The REAL Program to provide this to men who otherwise would likely be without housing and potentially homeless or living in bad conditions.”

The REAL Program, a nationally and internationally recognized behavior modification program, tackles substance use disorders, mental health, job preparation, housing, educational attainment and reentry planning.

The REAL House is currently in need of furnishings and is accepting these items:
–TVs (flat screen preferred)
–Three sets of bunk beds
–One double bed
–One twin bed
–Dressers
–Desks
–End tables
–Kitchen table
–Kitchen items
–Bed linens
–Folding chairs
–Towels

Anyone able to donate can email Sarah Scarbrough: Sarah.Scarbrough@richmondgov.com.

Scarbrough may also be reached at (804) 646-0987.

Pick up of large items can be arranged.

A Grand Opening at The Real House is planned for May. Stay with 8News for updates.

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