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RCNC Participant & Success Stories


Participant Story - Student

"As a student at the University of North Carolina in recovery, our group needs people with sustained recovery. Engagement with ATR gives me the knowledge of how to meet people where they are at, for every path to recovery can be different. The people that I have met at RCNC will increase my recovery capital for the future. It is invaluable for people like myself to continue to meet people in this field, as well as, in recovery. Assistance with housing costs, school supplies, textbooks and tuition allowed me to spend more time on my recovery. I would definitely recommend Access To Recovery to others in our collegiate recovery group. I’m excited about the knowledge and experience I can take back to Carolina in the spring."

Participant Story - Anonymous

"I’m a woman in recovery and in college.  I face many challenges in the university environment that isn’t recovery friendly.  ATR has provided me with resources to continue my recovery while remaining involved in my education.  By assisting me with rent at my recovery house I was able to work less hours and go to more meetings and connect with my recovery network.  Assistance with my textbooks also impacts my life tremendously because I’m using financial aid to go to UNC so my funding is very limited.  Talking with staff at RCNC is also helpful.  My person that works with me one-on-one is so understanding and offers me help with completing goals and tasks and staying focused.  Thank you for all the help, it really makes me excited that people care about me and my success."

Participant Story - F

Participant “F” had a history of active addiction that had resulted into homelessness, disconnected and detached from his family, being unemployable and incarceration.  Entering the ATR Program two days of being released from prison, homeless, unemployed and disconnected from his family, he expressed his desire to maintain his recovery and live a life of abstinence.  With having the opportunity for Life Coaching, Spiritual Counseling, Parental/Relationship Counseling and Employment coaching, “F” is employed full time, his relationship with his daughter and other members of his family have been restored and he recently moved into independent and affordable housing.  He continues to attend and participate in ATR Services encouraging other participants to follow the path of Recovery offered to him.  The double joy of this story is witnessing his daughter attend and participate in some of the sessions with him expressing her joy of having her father back in her life.

Participant Story - S Family 

The “S” family represents the portrait of the Family in Recovery.  Entering into the ranks of ATR, Father “S” expressed the importance of being a husband and a father.  He acknowledged the emotional and mental strain and stress of being in recovery and lacking the resources to support family reunification.  He expressed the joy of having the opportunity to being connected to a service which provided knowledge, insight and the skills for the family with a history of addiction.   He shared with his wife and son all in the process of recovery living together has now become bearable.  He expressed having received Parental/Relationship Counseling, Spiritual Counseling, Life Coaching and other ATR services (eye care) has brought the family closer together.  He expressed his thankfulness for the emotional and mental support during the time his wife was having serious physical complications and the strain and stress between him and son during this period has proven to be a learning experience for his family being them closer and united the Recovery of Love (Step 12).

Participant Story - J.

J. arrived in Raleigh in March 2017.  He came here after long term incarceration and arrived at the office of RCNC the third day he was in town.  Jose engaged immediately and was excited about recovery and the new life he was offered.  He took advantage of the resources available and saw changes in his life immediately.  He worked hard to secure employment and ATR assisted him with that journey to self-sufficiency.  After his successful completion of ATR he was connected to a local agency and obtained a vehicle.  Jose is persistent with his goals and always arrived with a smile.  He came to seek help and took suggestions rain or shine, cold or hot.  He rode public transportation to groups, meetings, to search for employment and even eventually to work.  He is truly a success story!  He continues to keep in touch and help others on their journey.  If you met Jose today you would meet a man with a smile and a big heart, not the man that spent 12 years in a federal penitentiary with a substance use disorder. Recovery works and recovery supports certainly assist with long term sobriety.

Participant Story - John

John entered ATR after weeks of hospitalization due to his severe alcoholism.  His organs had shut down and he came to our office upon release once he began walking again.  He participated in peer support groups and individual peer coaching consistently.  John entered recovery supportive housing and utilized ATR resources to become the person he was intended to be. He worked hard at his recovery and eventually gained stable employment that he maintained.  He assists a local recovery home and continuously reaches out to others that need help.  He now has a year of continuous recovery and is excelling in all areas of his life.


Success Story - Anonymous

Client Success Story – R. A. Assessment was completed by Fathers Forever and referred to Oasis for Life Coaching.  The young lady came to Oasis after leaving an abusive marriage. Her two children were with their dad while she worked on getting her life together. She turned to alcohol after her husband fathered a child with another woman and forced her to babysit the child. She was resentful and hurt because they lived a good life with their own business, home and cars. 

When we assisted her with resources and support, she turned her life around. She was referred to Dress For Success where she found support for job placement. She will start training on Feb. 1st at NC Dept. of Revenue in a temp to perm job. She is receiving assistance with housing through WCHS rental prep program. Her self-esteem is markedly improved, along with her hopes and dreams for the future. She is excited about her journey and doing great maintaining her sobriety. 

Success Story - Anonymous

Client Success Story – K.N. Assessment was completed by Fathers Forever.  The following is a statement that the client wrote:

“I started coming to Fathers Forever in October of 2016. I was unemployed, behind in my rent and child support.  I needed support in every area.

Being part of Fathers Forever helps me deal with stress. Being able to talk about what’s going on can take a lot off of you. Tommy and I have great communication. He helps me with employment opportunities, advice, and recovery support.

Every Saturday morning we have an all men group forum on lots of topics. It’s a great place to be a man and to learn how to do better, how to be sober and feel better about yourself. Fathers Forever is also helping me get my license back.”

Success Story - Travis

One veteran in the ATR program, Travis, reports, “I got a second chance.  It has really been a third and fourth chance at life.”  Travis is a young combat Veteran, having served in OIF and OEF with the Army Rangers.  Having survived an injury from an improvised explosive device (IED), he is currently battling chronic pain and PTSD symptomatology.  Like many returning veterans, Travis found himself addicted to the opioids prescribed to him by the hospital.  After several years, Travis is now in recovery and motivated for change.  Working in concert with the VA, the Veterans Court and the ATR SAMHSA Grant, Travis is able to generate new recovery skills, but even more importantly... he now has hope!

Speaking with Travis about his recovery and the ATR/community supports, it quickly becomes apparent the critical role community and peer-support services play in fostering recovery and stability.  Travis asserts, “Community is everything!  I find that when I can connect with another person who has gone through the same life experiences and has this understanding, I begin to see a different perspective.  They can help me in ways I never thought.  It is usually hard for me to trust people.  But having peers I can talk to, that makes a difference.”  He continues, saying “What I like about the ATR program is that it focuses not just on recovery, which is big, but it also focuses on life-skills.”  He continues, saying “Sure.  I know how to kill.  The Army spent a lot of money on me, teaching me how to do that!  But when it comes to life, that is much more difficult.”  The ATR program works to ‘meet a client where they are at’ and address their concerns and barriers to success; ATR remains client-centered, supporting clients in their recovery journey.  As Travis continues in his own dual journey (recovery from PTSD and addiction), he reports that “Just having that community, and a safe place I can go.  I am learning new ways of thinking.  And not going back to my old patterns.  Not just using [substances].”  Another powerful element of ATR is the positive impact it has on reducing stigmatization and shame regarding substance use and recovery.

By garnering community support with our partners, ATR is able to educate, empower and connect community services with our Veterans that are in recovery. 

Success Story - Nick

Another veteran, Nick, shares with us how ATR has supported him.

Nick reports that being in the ATR “makes me feel like... Like, I have somebody that backs me up.  Has my back.  Supports me.”  The participant says that, “I went from nothing.  Flat broke, homeless and using.  To being in recovery, going to Groups, using spiritual counseling, trying to be about change.”  ATR is geared towards veterans like Nick.  By building new support systems, and developing new coping strategies, participants are able to adjust to their transition into the civilian realm.  Nick is a combat veteran, living with PTSD, as well as a traumatic-brain injury.  He says, “Man, so much has happened because my time in the Navy.  I am still reeling from it.  But I think finally, I have hope.  I am on a new path.”  ATR gives veterans the chance to learn, and to live, better ways of living. 

Success Story - Alex

Another veteran Alex, shares how ATR is giving him the skills to manage his addiction and reduce his anxiety.

Alex reports that prior to being in ATR and the Veterans Court, he was “just an angry guy.  Do you know much I cared?  I didn’t!  I had no idea there was any other way to live.  I was just making it.  But now I don’t have to just survive.  I know you think...’well, yeah.  When you live like I did, it ain’t going to end well.’  But I am doing great now.  I need all the support I can get.”  As with all of our veterans, having the additional supports that are community-based gives a myriad of options for recovery support and growth.  SAMHSA asserts that there is no ‘single path to recovery.’  ATR recognizes each individual person’s strengths, passions, resources, and goals, and supports their attainment through community-support.  As our veterans continue to return home from the theatre, it is vital that we explore recovery-options (that are widely available), and champion the continued support of ATR.

Success Story -David

I came to RCNC seeking help in December. I was living at a sober living house and was told by my housemates that I should go to RCNC.  I did not know anything about them.  The person that did my intake was very welcoming.  We went through goal planning in the initial assessment.  I expressed interest in participating in one of the peer support groups.  I met with Charlie the next week to have my intake for group.  I began to go to group that week.  I made a commitment and followed through with it to go every week.  It was very helpful.  I also met with a care coordinator to help work towards my goals.  RCNC provided help with housing, sent me to the dentist, helped me with clothes, and provided work shoes for me.  I have been sober for 9 months and am working towards celebrating a year in sobriety.  It is great to have people in my life that understand.

Success Story - John

I came to RCNC when I was 7 months sober.  I kept hearing about them and all the resources they could offer.  They told me about NC ATR and how it could support me in my recovery.  I told them my goals and they assured me I could achieve them with some help.  I started attending the peer support group they facilitated and rapidly began to see my goals come to life.  I wanted a job, to save money, buy a car and get certified as a Peer Support Specialist within 8 months.  I met with the Care Coordinators and they assisted me with any barriers I faced.  I had a job within weeks and immediately began saving money.  Before long I had enough saved to purchase a car.  I have just completed my Peer Support Certification and the Recovery Coach Academy.  Within 6 months I have achieved my goals and I’m now applying for work as a Peer Support Specialist. I am for all the help they offered me and I still stop by to see them and even though I’ve completed my term with ATR they still welcome me and I feel part of their big family.      

Success Story - Ashley

Ashley joined ATR after leaving a local long-term recovery center.  She was searching for extra support for her recovery.  She had some tools to maintain her recovery and needed assistance coming to terms with her son’s removal from her custody and the chance that he may be adopted by his foster family.  She visited RCNC weekly to meet with a recovery coach.  She was willing to move forward with contacting her Case Worker with Child Protective Services and requested supervised visitation.  She worked hard to move from a recovery house into her own apartment. In the months she was engaged with ATR she engaged in services and flourished.  Last month she entered the courtroom nervous but supported by her care coordinator and her mutual aid sponsor.

Ashley has been granted unsupervised visitation in her process of welcoming her son back into her home.  The judge has witnessed a transformation occur and decided she is not only fit to care for her child but has taken the steps to prove they will have a bright future.

“Support from ATR has given me my son, stability and a bright future” said Ashley at her discharge interview.  She tends to shed a tear or two when we talk about the gifts recovery have given her and she still comes by to check in with updates on her progress.

Success Story - anonymous

RCNC and ATR has impacted my recovery and my future and for that I’m forever grateful.  When I arrived at RCNC newly sober and living in a local recovery house I was fairly new to Raleigh and needed support.  Their staff reached out to me and I began meeting with them for recovery support immediately.  Shortly after I started meeting with a staff member I was hospitalized for a heart attack.  My years of drinking and drugs had impacted my health and I hadn’t developed friendships with lots of people locally.  They continued to call and reach out to me and assisted me with my rent at the recovery house until I could heal enough to return to my job.  Next my diabetes flared up and I had to have surgery to remove one of my toes.  They were there for me then and continued to support my recovery and remind me of how my life was looking up throughout all my health challenges.  They helped me get to meetings and allowed me to come there during the day when I couldn’t work and cheered me up when I was down.  I’m not sure where I would be without their support.  I have developed relationships there and look forward to my time with all the staff and whomever may be at the center when I arrive.  The vouchers they gave me were vital to my survival and the assistance with completing forms to receive help with my medical bills and even shoes after my surgery has given me to strength to continue my recovery.  I now assist others in recovery and I’m glad to give others a ride to RCNC.  I have a year of sobriety and they still see me even though I’ve completed the ATR program.  They celebrated my anniversary and I feel they are part of my extended family.  Thank you for giving me a chance to live again.