‘I miss who they were’ Sister’s dream closer to reality
WATCHING drugs unravel her “tight-knit” family is a memory 19-year-old Storm O’Mara will never forget - but the Rockhampton rehabilitation centre gives her hope for the future.
She stood in the crowd as Keppel MP Brittany Lauga announced Lives Lived Well as the service provider for the $14.3 million residential rehabilitation facility and day program on Friday.
“I’m excited for a chance to get my brothers back,” Storm said.
“Watching them was awful because they were no longer who they were - you should’ve seen the house, there were holes everywhere.
“I really miss who they were; very kind generous people.”
Her family made national news three years ago when her mum Daphne Finnegan constructed a home-made ‘ice cage’ to lock Storm’s brother in while he detoxed.
“He was 15 and couldn’t get any help because there is no help for people in Rockhampton under the age of 18 for ice addiction,” Storm said.
Her experience has shaped her life - not only is she staunchly against drug use, she is studying at university to become a social worker.
Lives Lived Well chief executive Mitchell Giles said the centre would help families just like Storm’s.
“The people come into these facilities, they’re normal people who we provide service to and they’re ambitious to recover,” Mr Giles said.
The alcohol and other drug treatment service provider manages four residential centres and four day programs in Queensland.
Lives Lived Well also manages detox and family rehab programs.
While detox, residential rehabilitation and family units for those fighting addiction are usually operated as separate entities, the Rocky facility will combine all three.
Mr Giles said the new approach was an “exciting prospect”.
“A lot of people moving into drug and alcohol services struggle with detox (so) having a detox on site is a great benefit,” he said.
“People often can’t go to residential service because of children.”
The 42-bed facility will facilitate 32 residential patients, eight people detoxing and two family units.
Ms Lauga said the centre would be the “best facility in the country”.
“Lives Lived Well’s local experience over the past five years in Central Queensland has meant they’ve been the successful bidder,” Ms Lauga said.
The service provider will collaborate with the State Government during design stage to ensure optimum functionality.
While the site for the residential facility has not been confirmed, Ms Lauga expected the news would be announced in the coming weeks.
The day program site has also not been confirmed but Mr Giles said it should be located on Alma St.