Lewis County Drug Court enrollees, alumni planning ‘Walk for Recovery’ next month


Those looking to get in some exercise while supporting their friends and neighbors will get the chance to do so next month during the “Walk for Recovery,” which is being organized by those currently enrolled in Lewis County Drug Court, along with alumni from the program.

Leah Rader, a Drug Court graduate, told The Chronicle the “Walk for Recovery” will begin on Monday, May 13, at 5:30 p.m. at the Gather Cafe outside Gather Church, located at 408 W. Main St. in Centralia. 

Additionally, Rader will be grilling hotdogs after the walk at the Gather Cafe. All community members are invited to join.

“It’s really important, this fellowship. It’s good for all of us to get together,” Rader said. “Just walking around and spreading awareness.”

With the fentanyl crisis raging, awareness is key these days, she said. Rader went through Drug Court after her own experiences dealing with homelessness and drug abuse. She has now been sober for more than six years.

Drug Court was created in 2004 and is a voluntary program for addicts charged with a felony, according to Drug Court Program Manager Stephanie Miller.

The program targets high need and high risk offenders with a poor prognosis for success on their own. It aids them with structure and support using a three-phase recovery program. Drug Court lasts a minimum of 16 months, with most participants graduating after 19 to 22 months.

To graduate, a Drug Court participant must have a full-time job and stable housing, complete recommended treatment, stay clean for at least six months and be in the program for at least 16 months. Participants must also have a sober mentor and pay any court-ordered fines and restitution stemming from their case, Miller added. Once a person graduates, their charges are dismissed.