Mineral Wells Index, Mineral Wells, TX

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July 8, 2013

ARM: Sleeves rolled up & making a difference

Local ministry hopes to combat rising abuse and crime rates through life recovery

(Continued)

Oliver, a 40-year veteran of the ministry, said that his program covers about 75 clients a week in 20 different classes, all of which cater to the specific needs of each client as recommended by their case worker and the A.R.M. team. According to Oliver, A.R.M. handles an average of 100 clients a year who are on probation or parole and has enjoyed a whopping 75% success rate within this group. In other words, A.R.M. successfully rehabilitates 75 people a year who turn from a life of crime and thus are taken out of repeat-offender status.

"Here's the difference between other programs and ours: the difference is 'Life Recovery,'" Oliver said. "Others just do addiction recovery. Also, people come to us as part of a court-ordered mandate. So, if they don't come, they're in violation of probation. There's a legal involvement that we have that other programs do not."

The Life Recovery Program involves a life-skills curriculum that focuses on important topics such as building positive family relationships, parenting and anger and money management. A.R.M also includes a men's shelter and newly purchased women's unit. The Women's Center, which Oliver said is set to open in about two months, includes many beds and rooms for both single women and those with children. It will boast a Montessori-style daycare school and 24-hour support for whatever the women staying there might need.

A.R.M. has developed a strong reputation and support from the community. Mineral Wells Police Chief Dean Sullivan believes the ministry is filling an essential service gap in the area.

"I think it's very admirable, the effort that Pastor Ted and that entire group at A.R.M. is engaged in, trying to get people addicted to various substances some help," he said. "Any type of follow-up that gives people a choice and options during the recovery process."

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