His Steps for Women helps in recovery

Published 12:01 pm Monday, November 25, 2019

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By JOYANNA LOVE/ Senior Staff Writer

The Clanton Kiwanis Club received an update from His Steps for Women, a recovery program, from founder Brenda Burch during a meeting on Nov. 21.

The residential program for adult females has seven women in the program but can take up to 12.

Burch said she had spoken to the club very shortly after she started the ministry last year and had learned so much since then.

Women who come to the program may have been in jail, struggling with addiction or facing homelessness.

“You don’t think about women living in a tent in Chilton County,” Burch said. “You don’t think about addict women having to live in a trap house and make themselves available to men to survive — and that’s why His Steps is a safe place … This is their safe house.”

Burch said how long someone stays in her program varies on the situation.

“I don’t want them hitting the streets of Chilton County from jail and not having anywhere to go,” Burch said.

She said if this happens, they will wind up “in a trap house somewhere back on drugs.”

The program is an incorporated 501(c)3, which means it is an official, legal nonprofit organization.

Many women come to the program with nothing more than the clothes they are wearing.

“When they first come in they have to (write) a three-page letter to whatever drug they are an addict, telling it goodbye and why,” Burch said. “I want them to understand that they are the one doing this —I am just giving them a place and some leadership.”

Participants also write an essay on the topic “Who am I?” that they revisit “when they get to another level,” Burch said.

While in the program, each woman works through 12 steps of Narcotics Anonymous and 12 Bible-focused steps.

“I teach them to walk in Jesus’s footsteps,” Burch said. “The closer they get to God, the cleaner they get.”

Those who can work are required to get a job and pay $600 toward expenses of them being in the program, Burch said. Financial reports on how they spend the rest of their paycheck are submitted to Burch with receipts for every purchase.

“I’m not leaving them any money for drugs,” Burch said.

While they are looking for a job, Burch helps them apply for food stamps.

For those who legitimately cannot keep a job, Burch assists them in the process of applying for disability payments.

Group discussion and daily devotion groups are also required.

Referrals to the program come from a number of places.

Drug testing is also a requirement.

Once women have been in the program awhile, Burch said she likes seeing their perception of themselves change, especially when this includes embracing how God sees them.

Some have already completed the program and are on their own. Burch said they will sometimes message her letting her know that they are still drug free.

“I have gotten attached to so many of them,” Burch said.

The program runs on payments from those in the program and donations.

Monetary donations are accepted, as well as needed items. Right now, according to the program’s Facebook, specific needs are a coffee pot, toaster and can opener.

To make a donation, contact Burch at 205-287-1719 or hisstepsrehab@gmail.com.

More information is available on the His Steps for Women, Inc. Facebook page.