Former addict helps others

Monty Reddy and Pramesh Harrilal.

A former drug user is now inspiring other addicts to turn their lives around, and has even launched a drug rehab centre.
“I did not believe that I was an addict. I had my youth. I was educated. I had an ego. Because of all this, I was in denial. I mean, I didn’t fit the description.”
These are the sentiments of Monty Reddy, a former drug addict who recently celebrated 21 years of reformation. Reddy then decided to help other addicts by starting Panorama Recovery Centre, in 1998.
“My dad died while I was still an addict. I was 32 years old when I decided to recover. I needed to change one thing in order for everything to change,” said Reddy.
Panorama Recovery Centre is an NPO with a 40 percent recovery rate and it works closely with the Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous.
Reddy said the centre is where recovering addicts can enter a programme to reclaim their lives. “When they come to the centre, they follow a 12-step programme that helps them to train, maintain and sustain themselves after addiction,” said Reddy.
Over the last 20 years, the centre, which is currently a two-bedroom house in Eastwood, has assisted hundreds of people to reform. They receive assistance from families, and public donations.
Reddy, a field technician, also contributes to the centre from his own pocket. “With the basic cost and utility bills, at times an amount of R10 000 to R15 000 is needed to run the center and provide meals,” he said.
Panorama Recovery Centre has recently acquired a piece of land in Claridge from the family trust of Suren and Pramesh Harrilal, owners of Raven Panel Beaters, Autohail and Bevcol Panel Beaters.
Pramesh Harrilall said the public should be better educated about drugs and reach out to those affected. “Drug abuse is a problem in the community, irrespective of race or gender. We must reach out to the public and those unaware of the effects of drugs. We would also like other companies to assist the Panorama Recovery Centre. The aim is to help the helpless,” he said.
Reddy said he is thankful to God and his family who supported him. “We tend to forget that we are instruments of God. He alone can help us to reform,” he said.
Panorama Recovery Center is running a raffle to raise funds for the new building. First prize is a trip to India; second prize is a 32-inch flat-screen TV, and third prize is Nelson Mandela’s Long Walk to Freedom. For queries please contact Monty Reddy on 083 384 3630.

  AUTHOR
Public Eye Reporter

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