Voices of Hope – Michael C.

I grew up on the streets and I had been using heroin since I was 16. I got high to deal with the pain, but every time I came back down, the pain would still be there. I knew I needed to change.

When I got arrested the last time, the State Attorney told me that I could either go to rehab or prison. I knew then that this was my chance at real change, so I chose rehab. I was placed in a deferment program at the Matrix, and I committed myself to being sober. I wrote down my goals, worked hard, became a team leader, and completed the 4-month program early.

I knew that leaving rehab would be my biggest test, but because of the support of everyone at Operation New Hope, I have been able to fight temptation and achieve my goals. My therapist Ms. Krista is always right there for me, texting me to make sure I’m okay, checking in on me all the time. She helps me remember I am strong. Also, after completing the Ready4Work program, my job coach helped me get a job.

And I love working as a fry cook at Bono’s Bar-B-Q. Everyone here treats me like family. During the pandemic, when so many people were out of work, I was able to keep working and stay sober.

I’m really happy now. I read a lot and I’ve picked up skateboarding as a hobby. Meetings really help me keep going and it feels so good not to wake up dope sick. I have responsibilities. I am helping others. I am setting new goals. It’s been such a long journey, and I never knew I’d make it this far, but now I know I’m gonna get so much father.

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