Alcohol was my salary
Too much drinking and smoking turned Benedict, a university graduate, into a drunken loafer who lived in a shebeen and was paid with alcohol.
He started drinking when he was 14 years old and it worsened after he completed his matric. "My father found me a job in his company where I was paid weekly. I drank all my wages on payday and borrowed money for transport to work every Monday," said Benedict.
He later studied for a degree in commerce and accounting at university, but after completing his studies, he moved in with a family friend who owned a tavern.
"I drank heavily and forgot that I had to look for a job. I sometimes went for days with only alcohol in my stomach. My friend gave me pocket money when I started helping him in the tavern, but he later paid me with alcohol," he said.
The tavern owner closed down the business and moved to another province, leaving Benedict with no place to live.
"I knew I had to go back home and patch things up with my family. To assure my parents that I was determined to change, I started attending the services at the Universal Church. Through regular attendance in the Addiction Cleansing Therapy, I was able to stop drinking altogether. Two months later, I found a well-paid job. I now live peacefully with my family, and have also managed to settle all the debts I had accumulated because of my addiction to alcohol," said Benedict.