When Wayne Clark returned to the Cape after being away for 14 years, it was under difficult circumstances. He had recently been released from a hospital in Connecticut, struggling with alcohol addiction. Working on his sobriety, he was attending AA meetings. It was there that someone referred him to Canal House. After applying and being accepted, he entered and lived there for a year.
Founded by the Community Development Partnership in 1998, Canal House provides a safe, supportive living environment for individuals on the path to sobriety and in need of affordable housing. Residents share the responsibilities of the house under the supervision of a House Manager. During their stay, they take part in school, volunteer work or a job. Residents also commit to an individual treatment plan, including a 12-step recovery program. Through a collaboration with Gosnold on Cape Cod, a Program Director helps residents work toward a successful recovery.
Reflecting on his time living at Canal House, Wayne focused on the value of the discipline and guidance provided by the House Manager and Gosnold Program Director. “They watch over you and help you get where you need to go,” he said. He also shared how important it was to be able to share experiences and hope with others living in the house. He commented, “It’s nice to talk with people going through the same thing.”
Since leaving Canal House, Wayne has gotten married, spends time with his grandbabies and enjoys a bowling league. “It changed my whole life,” he said about Canal House. “My life has changed around completely and it started at the sober house. It’s all due to that. It all started there.”
Wayne wanted to ensure his name was included in the piece. He knows a lot of local people struggling and hopes by sharing his story they will know, “If I can do it, they can do it too.”