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New facility for New Beginnings

Samantha Huiras (left) and TD Hostikka, New Beginnings counselors, stand in one of the group meeting rooms in the former Kids-Peace building at the Prairie Justice Center. (Alyson Buschena/Daily Globe)

WORTHINGTON — Almost two years after New Beginnings began offering drug and substance abuse treatment programs in Worthington, the organization has outgrown its previous space.

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The organization, which offers services for individuals struggling with addiction and substance abuse, moved into the former KidsPeace building this week. New Beginnings also provides treatment for individuals incarcerated in the Nobles County Jail three times a week, as well as for community members struggling with addiction.

“Both programs, since October 2011, have grown tremendously,” said TD Hostikka, the primary counselor with New Beginnings. “I would say we average three to five people in the jail program. Right now, we’re at seven, and that’s the largest it’s been. We’re at 22 with individuals from the community, and we’ve been as high as 30 in the community group.”

When the organization first started its Worthington branch, it offered the majority of its services in a training room at Prairie Justice Center.

“The community and county were so gracious during the first two years to provide a training room for us as a place to hold our community meetings,” Hostikka said.

However, the organization began to outgrow the space, and it became clear that a new location would have to be found if New Beginnings wanted to continue offering effective, quality treatment for its clients.

“We were using the training room and used it quite often, but we were outgrowing it and outgrowing our group’s size,” Hostikka said. “We simply outgrew the space.”

The KidsPeace building seemed to be an ideal solution for the organization, which has eight facilities throughout Minnesota.

“This move to KidsPeace gives us two offices, allows us to take on a second councilor and allows us to split the groups up,” Hostikka said. “If we have two group rooms here, we can provide better treatment services. And it’s ours, so we don’t have to worry about scheduling.”

While New Beginnings is still in the process of moving into the former KidsPeace building, a session has already taken place in the new location, and the counselors look forward to having many more there.

“We had a treatment last night,” Hostikka said Wednesday. “Our offices aren’t completely set up, but we have desks and chairs. The group rooms have chairs, but we need to put in a few more things there, too.”

The New Beginnings office located nearest to its Worthington location is more than three hours away, and after two years in Southwest Minnesota, Hostikka said the organization is pleased with the progress and growth of the organization here.

“It’s been fun to build something from scratch,” he said. “The programs have done a really nice job.”

Moving forward, New Beginnings is hoping to continue expanding the type of programs it offers. Hostikka hopes to create a treatment program for youths in Worthington and the surrounding area.

“Once we’ve been here 60 to 90 days, I would like to start looking at building an adolescent addictions outpatient program,” he said.

Hostikka has been in discussion with many of the individuals who would be key players in such a program, and he said there is a need in Nobles County for that type of service.

“Right now, we are placing too many adolescents out of the county and in services they don’t necessarily require or need, but it’s the only service they can get,” he said. “This would allow us to keep things here and save taxpayers’ money by providing a service that the adolescents need right here.”

New Beginnings currently offers sessions for adult community members on Monday and Wednesday mornings and Tuesday and Thursday evenings. Programs with jail inmates are Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.

As New Beginnings settles into its new facility, its counselors look forward to continuing their work with the residents of Worthington and the region.

“New Beginnings as a whole is excited to be here in Nobles County and to provide services,” Hostikka said. “As a community member, it’s nice to be able to provide something that the community needs. It’s a pleasure and an honor to do this and to be able to give back to the community I live in.”

Alyson Buschena
Alyson joined the Daily Globe newsroom staff after spending a year in Latin America. A native of Fulda and graduate of the University of Northwestern, she has a bachelor's degree in English with a dual concentration in Literature and Writing and a minor in Spanish. At the Daily Globe, Alyson covers the crime beat as well as Pipestone and Murray counties, community news and feature stories. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, reading, and cooking. More of Alyson's writing can be found at
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