Tye Atkinson’s drug addiction began innocently.
Working as a plumber, the Echuca man said it started from a young age.
At 21 years old, Mr Atkinson was going out with his friends, drinking alcohol and partying — like many young adults do.
‘‘It just snowballed from there,’’ the now 30-year-old said.
For almost 10 years Mr Atkinson fell into a deeper hole of addiction, taking methamphetamine, before he reached out to his mother.
‘‘My mum actually works in dual-diagnosis,’’ he said.
‘‘So I reached out to her for help.’’
Mr Atkinson’s mother informed him about drug and alcohol rehabilitation facility The Cottage in Shepparton where he has now almost completed his four-month stint to recovery.
‘‘I feel like I owe them my life" - Tye Atkinson
‘‘I feel like I owe them my life,’’ he said.
The facility will celebrate an open day this month after about 12 months of successful operation, also showcasing its new 10-bed facility.
‘‘We are celebrating 50 clients taking the road to recovery,’’ general manager Josh Simm said.
‘‘We are inviting the people that are integral in the healing of disconnection, the agencies referring clients, supporting clients and providing the region with outstanding services.’’
Mr Simm said guests would also get the chance to speak to the families of those affected by the scourge of addiction and services that had supported them as well as former and current clients in a private setting.
‘‘We’re going to have lunch at 1pm and the new facility will be launched by three leaders of recovery publicly sharing their experience before leading a ceremony cleansing past ills and providing clear air for the future,’’ he said.
A walk-through connecting the houses will be led by Mr Simm’s uncle, Aboriginal elder and artist Stan Dryden, who will play the didgeridoo. Mr Dryden is internationally renowned and has performed in cities all over the world.
The Cottage project grew from the formation of the Shepparton Area Drug Action Committee (SHADAC) Inc which is chaired by Monsignor Peter Jeffrey.
‘‘We seem to be onto something good at The Cottage,’’ Mr Simm said.
‘‘What allows people to recover is their willingness and the great alcohol and drug services Shepparton has on offer.’’
The open day of celebration at The Cottage, St Andrews Rd, Shepparton, will be held on April 17 between 11am and 2pm.