Addiction recovery group welcomes waste pickers on stage for theatrical production in Cleveland

CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) – A Northeast Ohio addiction center is once again inviting its members to participate in a Playhouse Square show as they continue their recovery.

“Most of the people in the room haven’t been in a room before Ed Gemerchak, executive director of the Y-Haven YMCA of Greater Cleveland, said.“ It helps them move past their own worries to do something for someone. another. “

Y-Haven has been shining the spotlight on its members for over 20 years.

One of the participants, Darron Jones, has struggled with alcohol addiction for years.

“They just picked a number of people, and I was one of them,” he said.

This year’s play, titled 12,000 Steps, chronicles the lives of several drug addicts. Jones, who has been a member of Y-Haven for four months, was cast as the narrator for the production, which speaks about the experiences of the afflicted. “A voice and a memory from the past is what I play,” he said.

For Jones, the play is also personal; he has also overcome his own challenges in his past.

“In the 90s,” he explained, “I had a major car accident and this accident put me in a coma for 42 days… It’s just a miracle for me to be here. .

Today, he approaches his days of sobriety with renewed motivation: “I do it for myself, it helps me move forward.

Jones hopes to remind both the audience in the play and all of Cleveland that there is always a way to get well.

“There is help, there is hope out there,” he said, “don’t forget to reach out to someone.”

Y-Haven will perform 12,000 Steps this Thursday and Friday at 7:30 p.m. at the Cleveland Public Theater, as well as Saturday at 6:30 p.m.

Copyright 2021 WOIO. All rights reserved.

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