WARSAW — Kosciusko County’s second group of Jail Chemical Addiction Program graduates were recognized Friday, May 24, at a special ceremony held in the basement of the Kosciusko County Jail.
The program addresses substance abuse issues by providing treatment and education for jail inmates.
Seven women were presented with certificates of completion by Kosciusko County Sheriff Kyle P. Dukes and Jail Commander Shane Coney. The women also received special certificates from agencies supporting the program, including Beaman Home, Bowen Center, New Life Christian Church and Purdue Extension Office.
The women are led by Volunteer Coordinator Courtney Jenkins. Dukes praised Jenkins for coming in day after day and volunteering her time.
“It’s hard to believe we are here for graduation number two. After graduation one, Courtney Jenkins, myself, Shane Coney, the prosecutor’s office … we all sat down and talked about how we could improve,” said Dukes. “One thing that kept coming up over and over and over was more one on one time with professionals and the experts, so we did that. So this group got to experience more of that than the first graduating class.”
The event guest speaker was Bethany Dixon, who graduated with the first JCAP class. Dixon said her mother texts her every day to tell her how proud she is.
“I started using opiates at the age of 20. It went from prescription pain pills to heroin,” Dixon told those in attendance. “I’ve overdosed 38 times, so that’s enough to say that God has a purpose for my life.”
“In 2014, I was on life support with a trach. I had staph infection in my heart and lungs, and that still wasn’t enough to keep me from using,” Dixon said.
She described how in July 2018 she was sitting in jail, alone, and feeling all sorts of emotions she had been running from.
“I knew I had to find something other than drugs to change my life,” said Dixon. “That’s when Courtney Jenkins made the offer to me to join the JCAP program.”
Dixon will be released Monday from the work release program.
“I’m asking … I want some employer, some CEO of business to either call my house or call me here at the sheriff’s office and offer Bethany a chance of a lifetime. I’m talking about a job,” said Dukes. “She’s a proven leader, hard work, dedicated, she’s in the right direction, she’s a fighter. Please, please help me out and have some business owner call me and offer this phenomenal lady a job of a lifetime. Please do this for me … because she deserves it.”
“I want to tell the ladies graduating how important it is to stay vigilant and always be prepared for life’s turns and twists,” Dixon said.
Members of the second graduating JCAP class included Courtney Larkin, Morgan Wood, Karen Prater, Shana Hunziker, Taylor LeMaster, Cheryn Matteson and Caitlyn Smarr.