Wednesday, December 14, 2016

12 Days of Hope: A decade sober, a recovering addict uses her past to help others

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LaVonda was tired. Tired of losing jobs.  Tired of missing her kids. Tired of the pain her addiction was causing. After years of battling drug abuse, LaVonda was ready to regain control of her life. So nearly 10 years ago, she decided to get clean and heal the wounds her addiction had caused. Thankfully, she found our Tenants Empowerment Network.  


The Tenants Empowerment Network, one of our supportive housing programs for homeless families, provided the resources and support LaVonda needed to start re-building her life. Her case manager provided one-on-one guidance for finding a safe, permanent place to live and stable employment. Counseling sessions helped her stay on the path of sobriety. The loving environment was a safe haven for her daughter.  But most importantly for LaVonda, the staff at TEN gave her the strength she needed to pursue her goals. “Catholic Charities and especially my case manager at TEN showed me that I could do it, that I was strong enough,” said LaVonda.

The TEN program helped LaVonda take the next step to independence by moving into permanent affordable housing.  Now, almost a decade later, LaVonda is a testament to how people can change – and fully rebuild their lives in recovery.  Working two jobs, one in a veterans' housing program, she’s saved enough to move with her daughters into their own market- rent apartment and in a few months LaVonda will celebrate 10 years of sobriety. LaVonda credits her work with helping homeless veterans as a therapeutic way for her to stay clean. Plus, her own struggle with addiction propels her to help other who face similar obstacles. 

“I want to give back to others who are struggling. I love helping people and I want to show them that they are capable, just like me.”