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Victory Life Fellowship opens thrift store

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Victory Life Fellowship, a Christian residential substance abuse recovery center which has been operating in Artesia since 1998, opened a thrift store at 812 W. Dallas Ave. on Feb. 5.

Funds generated from the donation-based thrift store will be used to fund the facility’s men’s home, which was built in 2010 and can house up to 30 men. Funds will also be used for general supplies needed for the program, which supplies everything from basic toiletries to food and bedding for participants.

Victory Life Fellowship is a 501(c)(3) that guides and supports residents as they conquer addiction through a 180-day faith-based program at no cost to the participant.

“Our method of treatment is done through spiritual counseling and education of Biblical principles,” the Victory Life Mission Statement reads. “This helps develop a new self-esteem and builds moral ethics into a person’s life.”

The program was founded by Eliaz “Alex” Hernandez to help men and women battling life-controlling problems. The program is now run by Gabriel Herrera, who took over the program in October 2023. According to Yvonne Herrera, who has worked with the program for 23 years, most program participants suffer from addiction to methamphetamine, heroin and alcohol.

Victory Life works alongside parole and probation departments to offer citizens an alternative sentencing program, assuming the potential participant will not require medical intervention during the detoxing phase. Those in need of medical attention, such as most fentanyl users, are directed to local medical centers until they can safely participate with Victory Life Fellowship. Victory Life Fellowship currently serves six Artesia residents.

The program previously raised funds through car washes, bake sales, yard work and other efforts, but the program directors hope the thrift store can generate regular income while still allowing participants and graduates to take ownership of the program and their own recovery. 

Victory Life Fellowship can be reached by phone at 575-746-4446, by email at victorylifeofartesia@gmail.com, or through the Victory Life of Artesia New Mexico Facebook page.

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