Narconon Tijuana Celebrates Two Years of Saving Lives with Innovative Rehab

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An anniversary celebration in Tijuana brings together Narconon staff with community and Catholic Church members to celebrate their combined accomplishment in saving lives from drug addiction.

Padre Lares of Narconon Tijuana

Padre Lares of Narconon Tijuana Speaks to Guests at the 2nd Anniversary Celebration

It is such an error to think that the addict does not deserve our love and attention. Addiction affects all parts of the personality – physical, emotional, mental and spiritual, and treatment needs a spiritual address to reach all of these.

The City of Tijuana may have gotten a reputation for drug cartel violence, but you would never know it on this second anniversary of Narconon Tijuana. Here there were only happy faces and a sense of remarkable accomplishment. On October 25th, 2014, the staff of this rehab facility were joined by graduates, family and community supporters to celebrate their success.

About a hundred people gathered for breakfast festivities on this fall morning. The Tijuana center’s staff were there including director Jorge Loaiza and Sister Veronica and Angelica, who came to train and work at Narconon from the Catholic Samaritan Order of Jesus and Mary of Guadalupe. At this unique residential center, located on the southern outskirts of the large, rambling city, the Narconon program combines the successful secular educational rehab program used around the world with Catholic values and beliefs. The two Sisters from the Church work in the rehab every day, assisting the women also delivered to by this program.

This center was the project of Padre Jaime Lares Chairez who realized during a workshop delivered by Narconon International to Twelve Step centers in Tijuana, that the Narconon model incorporated an educational methodology based on a profound understanding of the human being from a humanitarian, spiritual perspective. He decided to learn how to incorporate this program into the help he was already providing to the addicted, and he applied for a license to open a Narconon center in Tijuana. With help from staff from the international office in Los Angeles, his staff completed the training he needed, while at the same time building the facility with their own hands, with fundraising and other support from the Catholic Church and community. The supporters included some from as far away as Japan, where Padre Lares spent many years.

"Padre Lares and his hardworking staff have done a wonderful job in making this center such a success in its first two years," said Clark Carr, president of Narconon International. "We are grateful for the patronage of the Archdiocese of Tijuana. The support of this congregation and those of other communities and countries has been essential in enabling many families suffering from addiction to get back their loved ones, now as sober, productive, ethical individuals."

Principal speaker was Dr. Humberto Gurmilan, who counsels substance abusers in San Diego as well as Tijuana. ”It is such an error to think that the addict does not deserve our love and attention,” he said. “Addiction affects all parts of the personality – physical, emotional, mental and spiritual, and treatment needs a spiritual address to reach all of these."

Two recent graduates were present to accept their graduation certificates. Ricardo S. had been a meth and "everything" addict for twenty years before he found Narconon. "Now I'm a different man," he said. "Now I can give something back for all the bad I've done." Mayra C. G. looked very much like the elegant ballerina she once was, before she lost it all to heroin. She, her mother and Narconon staff all wept with joy as she accepted her certificate.

Narconon Tijuana staff and students sang songs, and with flashing skirts and clicking heels a troupe of Mexican dancers added joy to the festivities, followed by statements from other students and executives of Narconon Tijuana, describing their personal successes and rewards.

Around the world, there are more than 100 Narconon rehab and education centers. The Narconon rehab program is a long-term residential program founded by William Benitez. The recovery program utilizes the humanitarian works of American author and philosopher L. Ron Hubbard. Narconon Tijuana accepts Spanish-speaking students from the United States and throughout Latin America. For more information on the Narconon drug rehab program or its drug prevention curriculum, call 1-800-775-8750 or visit

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Clark Carr
since: 09/2008
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