By Zach Solon | April 23, 2021 at 9:48 PM EDT – Updated April 23 at 11:49 PM
WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) – After watching his son battle drug addiction and eventually recover, Mark Marcley decided to give other addicts an opportunity to do the same.
Together with his son, the two created Prodigal Recovery of NC, a halfway house in Wilmington for recovering addicts. Since 2017, they have been operating out of one, 12-bed location in the city.
“It came about as a result of addiction with one of my sons, which started probably about 10 or more years ago,” said Marcley. “And after a number of years of active addiction and some very difficult times, he finally admitted that he needed help.”
Marcley hopes to raise awareness of drug use and the rising number of fentanyl-related deaths in the United States in recent years. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, illicitly manufactured fentanyl seems to be a primary factor in the increase in overdose deaths during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Two of the most important messages that I want to get out is that there is hope and recovery, there are resources that are available, locally, regionally, and nationally, to help people. And the other big message is the dangers of fentanyl.”
Marcley says Prodigal Recovery has seen an increase in the number of recovering addicts looking for a place to stay since the pandemic began.
“It has caused an increase in the demand. Typically, we have several people waiting to come in and it wasn’t always like that,” says Marcley.
He is also concerned that the only state-funded detox facility in Wilmington, the Harbor, has closed down. Marcley fears it could lead to more drug-related deaths.
Marcley’s passion for raising awareness about drug addiction lead him to launch his own weekly radio show, Recovering Hope, where he speaks with guests from across the country about addiction and recovery.
“My passion is to let people know about these risks — that there is hope. But if you’re buying drugs on the street just don’t, don’t do it. Period,” says Marcley.
If you or a loved one is in need of a path to recovery, you can learn more about Prodigal Recovery on the website.
If you are in crisis, the New Hanover County Health Department says you can contact the Trillium Mobile Crisis Team at (866)-437-1821, or the Quick Response Team at (910)-833-2052.
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