January 28, 2010 § 3 Comments
So I have been on various radio and TV interviews as I have mentioned in my previous blog post. I was at The Impact Centre where I went to seek help with my drug addiction for about 9 months, when I got the opportunity to share my story on one of the biggest radio stations in our country, Radio Good hope FM 94-97 fm.
I was very excited at the prospect of speaking to and sharing my story with thousands of people and very nervous at the same time. In the past I needed drugs to speak to crowds and here I found myself having to speak to thousands of people that would be listening in. I was even more nervous after hearing that DJ Suga, one of our local celebs was going to be conducting the interview. Radio Good Hope FM was covering the scourge tik (methamphetamine) that had hit the Cape Flats. And seeing that I was addicted to this drug, and have overcome it (with the help of Jesus); it made me perfect candidate to be interviewed for this particular show.
The day of the interview arrived and I was as nervous as can be. However I knew that this was for the glory of God that I would be doing this. On that particular day they were broadcasting from one of our biggest malls and there was quite a buzz as DJ Suga was present and people came to see her. I was introduced to her and she briefed me and told me at what time I would be on. She then continued with the show and then the moment finally arrived. She signalled me to come to the microphone and where she was seated. She told me in a gentle voice: “Don’t be nervous. Just be yourself”.
The interview finally started and she asked me various questions as to how I ended up in drugs and gansterism and what kind of things I did when I was high on drugs. I told the listeners my story and when it came to the part as to how I came off from drugs I grabbed the opportunity to tell the listeners that it was with the help of God that I was set free and when I tried it on my own I failed each time. So the message was out there. It was only through Gods help that I was set free.
Through the grace of God the interview went well and I could see a tear in DJ Suga,s eye while I was sharing my story. This was the first of many opportunities I would get to mention the name of Jesus to the masses. Stay tuned as I share another opportunity God availed to me to share with the masses.
*NB I regret not having taken any pictures of this occasion.If only i knew then that i would have a blog of my own i would have captured the moment on camera:-)
June 8, 2009 § Leave a comment
Yesterday morning was filled with excitement as we were scheduled to minister to a group of young people that are faced with many of the same issues all of today’s youth are faced with. In addition to the pressures of just living in today’s world, drugs are being shoved at this young people as a solution to all their problems. Drugs, as they soon find out, are not a solution to anything but are instead a greater problem with which to deal.
As I was preparing myself to work with these young people I was feeling so blessed and privileged that the team and I had been given the opportunity to speak to and steer yet another group of youngsters to the right path.
Bradley, Clinton and Dylan (the guys I work with) and I were the team selected to take on this particular task. Our plan was to run a program consisting of a number of activities designed to both serve as ice breakers and to demonstrate the importance of teamwork. We would then base or talks around these particular activities. This is what the program looked like:
Introduction – Bradley Naidoo
Talk on Honoring – Brent Williams
Talk on Mentors – Dylan Liversage
Talk on Obedience – Clinton Liederman
Talk on Choices – Bradley Naidoo
Everything went well during the open gathering and we got a good response from the crowd. We then decided to break up into smaller groups according to age and hear from the youth regarding what they are facing on a daily basis.
One young boy in my group shared that he is offered drugs on a daily basis at school. Rather than go for the hard drugs he opted to smoke “soft drugs” like dagga (weed) so that he wouldn’t feel left out of what others were doing.
On the subject of relationships one of the guys said that his girlfriend gives him a lot of stress. He shared that it hard to handle and shared with us that he goes often to drink beer after a stressful encounter with her. He told us it relieves his stress.
One of the guys said he was once forced to smoke methamphetamine (speed) with the older guys he was hanging out with. They locked the door and threatened him and his friend with harm if they didn’t smoke the speed.
I could see clearly that these young people need to learn coping skills and that when faced with these life stresses they need to be encouraged to go to one of their teachers to get help in dealing with it and talk it through. We, here at the Center can be helpful to them if they are willing to come to us and accept our help.
These are but a few cases and a few examples of what our young people face out there today. It’s tough for young people today and we need to be there for them with love, not judgment. The idea is to give them the tools to keep them from messing up, but if they do mess up we must be there to offer a helping hand. The young people of today are the future of this world so we need to protect and teach them the proper way. I love working with youth and I thank God that He has placed me within an organization that does this type of work.
Sending a big thank you to the Impact Team and especially our group leader, Bradley Naidoo…you guys are an inspiration to me
March 30, 2009 § 5 Comments
This story appeared in one of our newspapers and was posted by Marlon Parker.
Whenever I see this picture it gives me hope. Hope for every mother or father out there who has a child caught up in drugs or gangs. This is the amazing story by Allida Williams:
As a mother, I always had great expectations and high hopes for Brent, my only son. And almost 9 years ago I was faced with the nightmare that my son was on drugs.
Everyday I would watch Brent visit neighbours, which I naively thought to be innocent and safe. Suddenly his behaviour changed, he became aggressive and withdrew from the family. He frequently asked me for money and became careless about his appearance.
I only accepted the reality once I saw Brent deteriorating before my very eyes. I was forced to accept that my son was addicted to drugs and that help was needed.
This motivated me to do research on drugs and contacted various rehabilitation institutions in order to rid my son from this curse. We were unable to place him in any rehabilitation institutions due to fees being too costly. My state of health weakened as depression overtook me and the hope for my son’s future disappeared.
Brent became involved in gang related activities, lost his job and started selling drugs one after the other. Hallucinations haunted him almost everyday which resulted in him imagining that there were people trying to kill him.
Brent threatened to kill his father and myself on numerous occassions, this was the extent the drugs called TIK controlled him. He lost all respect for his family and the community. I was ashamed of my son. I became fearful and heart sore as I watched my son’s life being destroyed by TIK.
Every night I would cry myself to sleep and I continually blamed myself for his state of mind, a situation in which I was totally helpless. For 8 years Brent had to feed his drug habit, leading to greater harm, fear and pain to us.
One day I found him with cuts on his legs, bleeding and claiming that he accidentally hurt himself. Knowing that he lied, I realized that my son was at breaking point, as he continued to threaten to kill himself. There was absolutely nothing he or I could do to save him from his destructive drug abuse and related activities. I knew that only a miracle could set him free, thus urging him to call out to God.
The very moment he broke down and cried out to the Lord Jesus for help, God sent help his way. A family friend Terrence Hendricks (who belongs to Impact Direct Ministries), told us about a place that could help him. Brent was taken to the Impact Direct Ministries (founded by Pastor Roger Petersen) walk-in-centre where he was counselled and supported. Since then Brent was equipped by Pastor Roger Petersen and other mentors to become a leader himself.
He was sent on several community-based and leadership courses that helped him to plough back into his community. Together with other young men who were also helped by Impact Direct Ministries and under the leadership and guidance of Pastor Roger Petersen: they now go to schools, organizations, companies, clubs and shopping malls where they do presentations and outreaches on drugs and the effects it has on you. Through these outreaches they have helped many drug addicts and families.
I am so grateful to the Lord for giving my son and our family victory over the monstrous affects caused through my son’s past drug addiction. Instead of fear and tears of sorrow, our home is now filled with so much love, peace and a hope of a great future for our family. And this is my prayer for every mother and family.
Name: Brent Williams
Age: 30 Yrs
Area: Bridgetown, Athlone
Substances: TIK, LSD, Alcohol, Mandrax, Exstacy, Cocaine(Crack)
No. of years: 8 years addicted
Its amazing to see how both Brent and his mom are now engaging with technology using it as a medium to share their stories to give hope to other families.