Weston, MA – La Coka Nostra rapper Slaine has opened an addiction recovery center in his home state of Massachusetts.
Christened Charles River Recovery, the 110-bed facility was officially opened at the beginning of September with Slaine, staff, partners and other advocates on deck for the ribbon-cutting ceremony. Recovery is a topic that hits close to home for Slaine, who struggled with his own demons for years before getting clean. Anyone familiar with his catalog, including song such as “Do What You Love,” likely connected the dots.
“My music was always a documentation of what I was going through in my life,” Slaine tells HipHopDX. “Because of that, I was very transparent in my addiction and use of drugs and alcohol. That life was the only one I knew. I never thought recovery was possible for me. I tried a thousand times and couldn’t stop no matter what consequence or opportunity was at stake.
“When I did find recovery, I was also very transparent in the struggles and gifts of that. I was taught in the program of recovery that I work that in order to keep it I must be willing to help others do the same. People started to reach out to me and I would do my best to help them or find resources for them but soon found that that could be complicated for several reasons but always did my best regardless and that put me in touch with a lot of people who work in the field.”
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In the winter of 2019/2020, Slaine was experiencing some personal issues and ramped up his service work. So, he started doing charity work in various capacities and met Matt Ganem, who has a great reputation in the Boston recovery community.
“He ran a treatment center and asked me to come out and speak,” he continues. “That turned into running groups and when the pandemic came I found myself for the first time in decades really home full time. I began going to sober livings, detoxes, programs and treatment centers to share my experience but also to familiarize myself with what they had to offer and the people who did the work with addicts and alcoholics daily.
“I began to find that this was work that I was passionate about and this is what I am supposed to be doing right now. I also learned a lot about how the system works and doesn’t work and thought maybe I could make a difference in this area.”
Slaine was ultimately put in a position to open his own facility and he’s hoping to a least make a dent in the current drug epidemic that’s sweeping the U.S.
“We are not only losing a generation of people to this drug epidemic, we are also in a situation where the death and destruction it is causing is devastating the families left behind,” he says. “When you look at the problem as a whole it seems insurmountable. I don’t know how to fix that but what I do know how to do is put positive energy towards something a day at a time.
“I know how to connect with other people and be part of a team. My hope is to be a small part of the solution. I think it just starts with helping one person at a time.”
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Slaine’s desire to open Charles River Recovery stemmed from the frustration he felt trying to find resources in the state of Massachusetts. Most of them were out of network and only available to those who can afford top tier insurance. As he points out, many are located out of state or owned by giant corporations.
“The vision for Charles River Recovery is to be accessible to as many people as possible as an in-network facility,” he says. “We are now licensed and accredited and working toward building these partnerships that can bring this vision to fruition. The center we have opened is a medical facility.
“As a detox and clinical stabilization facility, it’s the first level of care and entry point to recovering from Substance Use Disorder. We are group of local people from this community and have assembled a team of medical professionals and staff who have this work in their heart. I believe it will be a special place and a great resource for Boston. That’s my hope.”
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