A brand new gym has opened on Boston’s Newmarket Square. However, it serves as more than just a workout facility.
“It’s not just people here that are working out, it’s people that are here for the same cause,” said Dina Gonsalves, who is a member of The Phoenix.
“If you’re 48 hours clean and sober you can come on in,” said The Phoenix founder, Scott Strode. “The program is free.”
The gym offers free memberships to anyone with a history of addiction who is currently in recovery.
“It’s always been a dream of mine as a person in recovery to try to find a way to help people through physical fitness, through yoga, through Crossfit,” said The Phoenix volunteer Mary Kelleher.
The free gym memberships are courtesy of The Phoenix, a national nonprofit with locations in 11 states and 14 cities.
It offers a free, active sober community to people with substance use disorder.
After operating in a smaller Boston location for months, The Phoenix’s new Boston facility is now open.
The 11,000 square-foot facility is the organization’s largest gym in the nation.
Saturday’s grand opening was extra special for founder Scott Strode.
“I got sober here in Boston,” he said. “For me, getting in the gym helped save my life.”
After living in Boston for 12 years, Strode moved to Colorado where he founded the organization.
“So opening here today is like bringing Phoenix home to me,” Strode said.
Members, staff and volunteers celebrated by kicking off the first day with a massive workout.
Participants included many people who are in recovery, including Gonsalves.
“So this is the first time that I’ve actually furthered my recovery and having the Pheonix in my life helps me tremendously,” Gonsalves said.
After struggling with addiction for over 20 years, the Dorchester native is 13 months sober.
“You can try the program out and what you’ll find is a new group of friends that will support you in sobriety,” Strode said.