New home helps former drug addicts

Victory Over Violence

BENTON, Ark. – The owner of a Benton Resale Store is taking her mission to help others one step further by creating a home to help women who are former drug addicts.

“You come here, you will get Jesus,” Melissa Richardson said about the house.

Richards lives at the house, which is called Sheltering Arms. Everywhere you looked there was a sign of the Lord and positive affirmation.

“It is like a spiritual Bible study boot camp is what we’re doing right now,” Richardson said.

Bonnie Johnson just opened Sheltering Arms one month ago. Johnson is the owner of the Helping Hands Resale Store, which she started 14 years ago.

“We truly see the needs of the people, whether it’s clothing today, sheltering tomorrow,” Johnson said.

A total of four women live at Sheltering Arms. Richardson said Johnson’s mission for the home is unlike any other she’s lived in for recovering addicts.

“She [Johnson] just comes over not to tell us what we’re doing wrong, like a lot of house people do that run houses like that. She comes over and just ministers to us, like we feel like we can conquer anything after she leaves,” Richardson said.

“If more people would create homes, not shelters, not transitional houses, homes, it’s a home,” Johnson said.

Richardson said the home has not only helped her stay clean, but it has restored her self confidence and overall happiness.

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