Recovering addict cleans up her act

One Cape Flats mother speaks about her addiction to alcohol and drugs.

Some Mitchells Plain recovering drug addicts are determined to use their second chance wisely.

CAPE TOWN - Having survived almost 27 years of alcohol and drug addiction, most people would be satisfied just staying clean - but not one determined Cape Flats mother.

Known only as Christine, the 41-year-old Mitchells Plain resident says she found it hard to cope while fighting her addiction.

"I couldn't cope. I tried to commit suicide a few times."

But Christine is still alive after receiving help at the out-patient alcohol and drug treatment centre in Tafelsig.

She now plans to become a paramedic to save other people in distress.

Eyewitness News and the Cape Argus visited the centre on Thursday, as part of Lead SA's Drug Watch initiative.

The facility provides free counselling programmes for those looking to escape a life of substance abuse.

The cramped clinic is filled with people looking for assistance.

Christine tells Eyewitness News she started binge drinking at the age of 14, before gradually becoming addicted to tik (methamphetamine).

She then turned to the Matrix Substance Abuse Programme for help, as she could not stand who she had become.

"People leave and that's when you know you have to turn things around."

Christine says she hasn't used drugs or alcohol in eight months.

"If I stay on my path to recovery, I know I will get better."

According to a latest study, more pregnant women in the Western Cape are addicted to drugs and this affects the development of their children.