Jellyroll, Struggle Jennings partnering with PCHC on unique drug rehab facility

Published 3:28 pm Tuesday, February 27, 2024

By Jay Compton

Pineville Community Health Center is partnering with some big names in the entertainment industry to bring a revolutionary full-service drug rehabilitation program to the hospital.

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Stars such as Jellyroll and Struggle Jennings are directly involved in the project which will include detoxification, a 28-day inpatient program, outpatient followup and even a youth outreach component.

“I can’t get too much into the minutia because we are creating our own intellectual property and curriculum for these programs where we intertwine the entertainment industry with the rehabilitation industry. It’s going to be very unique, I can assure you of that,” said Michael Frey, part of the PCHC ownership group. “Believe it or not Pineville Community Health Center is going to be the flagship for rehabs across the country and the first one is going here.”

The idea to bring such a program to Pineville came after hospital CEO Dr. Timothy York shared some research he had done when looking into the effects of the drug epidemic in Bell County. He found that 75% of the school kids in this community have at least one parent that has either been arrested or incarcerated for drugs or alcohol. That sobering number ranks fourth in the nation per capita.

“There’s not a person in this hospital, there’s not a person in this town, there’s not a person in this country that doesn’t know somebody who has been affected by this.  I can tell you that Struggle and Jelly are as passionate about this as anybody you’ll ever meet,” Frey said.

Jennings, the grandson of country legend Waylon Jennings, has already made several trips to Pineville to meet with hospital staff and even joined the PCHC leadership team on a trip to Frankfort where they met with Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman, State Rep. Adam Bowling and others to talk about the rehab program that has been named “Sound Sobriety.”

“We are excited to open the doors on our first rehab facility Sound Sobriety in Pineville. We are all too familiar with the epidemic of addiction that’s been crumbling our communities for decades and prepared to fight diligently to help make an impact in this beautiful city.,” Jennings said.

Both he and Jellyroll have well-documented histories with drugs and addictions. They have both shared stories through their music of carrying hundreds of caskets of friends lost to drug addiction and overdoses. They also share through their testimonies and their music how they have turned their lives around. Being involved in Sound Sobriety is another way they are giving back.

“I myself have struggled with addiction, lost many friends to overdoses including the mother of my children and countless family members and I know what it’s like, seen it first hand and felt the wrath of drugs and addiction. But I also overcame, turned my life around and built an incredible carer from the rubble of my past life,” Jennings said. “ So I am here . . . dedicated to make a change and help others see that anything is possible.

“We are going to build a strong community that offers help, a support system and a family to those who have been affected or are caught in the vicious cycle of addiction. It takes a village and Pineville is full of so many amazing people. . . in my few visits I’ve seen so much resilience and perseverance in the eyes of the people I’ve met and I know we can make a difference if we all band together and fight to make a change!”

Frey said work was about to start on remodeling part of the hospital to house the rehab center and plans are for it to open by this summer.

He said after patients go through the rehab program they will continue to be monitored by the staff.

“We become the patient’s primary care facility. A lot of times in rehabilitation situations and substance abuse issues almost 90% of them with addiction issues also have a diagnosable psychiatric issue. That’s referred to as a dual diagnosis or a co-occuring disorder,” Frey said. “We want to treat both of them, not just half of the problem. If you’ve got four bad tires it does you no good to just change two of them. We need to change their whole perception of life. With the help of Struggle and Jelly and Brantley and guys like that, it’s going to let people know that it’s okay to get help and that you’re not in this by yourself.”

Frey also said he wants to end the stigma of what a rehab facility is, adding it won’t lead to people roaming the streets around the hospital. They also want to help them learn life skills like filling out a job application or finding a field of work.

“I want the community to understand that this stigma of calling everybody addicts or junkies is going to go away under our watch. These are people, they’re not junkies.,” he said. “We’re going to focus on solutions and not what they’ve done in the past, but to help them to control their future.”

A nationally-known boxing coach, Fred Dulay, is leading the youth outreach program being started at PCHC. Frey said the community has welcomed Dulay and is excited about the mentoring program.

“That youth program is not a revenue generator, it’s us giving back to the community,” he said. “It’s just a huge passion of ours and if 75% of the kids are dealing with mom or dad being in trouble, a lot of times they’re going to need a mentor or a big brother. We want to be there for them to be able to do that.”

Frey added that the entire program is faith-based.

“All of the names that we’ve mentioned are saved people. We may have done some things in our lives that we wished we hadn’t, but we got saved and have started to turn around,” he said. “The Lord has blessed us and blessed this hospital, even though there are challenges. The problems in this hospital weren’t created overnight and they won’t be fixed overnight. But the Lord has got his hand on this and we really feel strongly about that.”