Launch rally planned for At The Well

The Saline Courier - - FRONT PAGE - By El­isha Mor­ri­son el­[email protected]­ton­courier.com

At The Well Women’s Restora­tion Ranch will hold its launch rally at 3 p.m. Jan. 25 in the Fam­ily Life Cen­ter at Hol­land Chapel Bap­tist Church in Ben­ton.

“The idea is to be a res­i­den­tial re­cov­ery cen­ter for women with al­co­hol and drug ad­dic­tion,” said CEO and Ex­ec­u­tive Chair Mar­ian Ward.

Ac­cord­ing to Ward, At The Well will be a faith based or­ga­ni­za­tion and the name comes from the Bi­b­li­cal story of the woman Je­sus meets at the well who he of­fers the wa­ter of life.

“Her past didn’t re­ally mat­ter,” Ward said.

Ward has a back­ground work­ing with non­prof­its. She was asked to be on the board of a new non­profit in New Hamp­shire, but the or­ga­ni­za­tion strug­gled get­ting con­nected with lo­cal churches. She be­lieved it would be eas­ier to start some­thing like it in the South.

She spoke with her pas­tor at Cel­e­bra­tion Church who wanted to do some­thing sim­i­lar.

Ward would like to model At The Well off of Har­bor Home in Con­way. She’d like to of­fer some­thing like cater­ing or car de­tail­ing out of the or­ga­ni­za­tion to help with funds and help give women skills they can use. She is look­ing to see what sort of ser­vices the com­mu­nity needs.

She said so far At The Well has a board, an idea and a model.

She sees there is a need for a place like this be­cause Arkansas is fight­ing both opi­oid and metham­phetamine prob­lems. Ward said there are just not enough beds in the state to bat­tle ad­dic­tion.

She sees many re­sources in Lit­tle Rock and Con­way, but not as many other places. Ward feels that by putting it in Saline County, she can spread the re­sources out. She hopes to find prop­erty for the

ranch in south­ern Saline County. She wants to har­ness the beauty of the area to help in re­cov­ery.

Ac­cord­ing to Ward there will be heavy hors d’oeu­vres catered by Har­bor Home at the launch rally.

Women whose lives have been im­pacted by Har­bor Home will speak.

Ward and the or­ga­ni­za­tion will share the vi­sion for At The Well. Cel­e­bra­tion Church’s band will play mu­sic.

Spon­sor­ships are avail­able for At The Well and Ward is set­ting up a monthly giv­ing pro­gram. Any­one who would like to sup­port At The Well, a 501(c)3 or­ga­ni­za­tion, can email ml­[email protected]­ranch.org or call 501-2139905.

Ward hopes to work with other or­ga­ni­za­tions in the area to help cover lo­cal needs.

At The Well plans to train the women in skills such as how to find a job and fi­nances.

Ward’s goal is for At The Well not to cost any­thing to the women it serves, ex­cept a reg­is­tra­tion fee. She doesn’t want lack of fi­nances to pre­vent women from get­ting the help they need.

As it moves to­ward be­com­ing a phys­i­cal re­al­ity, Ward wants At The Well to be an in­de­pen­dent en­tity. She doesn’t want any­one to feel they have to be part of a church to get the help they need.

There will be no charge to at­tend the launch rally, but do­na­tions will be ac­cepted. Ward wants the event to be ac­ces­si­ble and a chance for the com­mu­nity to get to know the new or­ga­ni­za­tion.

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