Sunday, December 23, 2012

The Reason we're Freezin': A True Story from Canada Plunge or Pledge to Make a Difference

She was a beautiful First Nations woman but she didn’t realize that yet. When I first met Sherry (name changed) she was angry, broken and insecure. This was her second time in our recovery program. I wondered if she could stick it out.


You see, SA Foundation’s recovery program is not for the faint of heart. For someone with an addiction and used to living on the streets, our rules are tough! Curfews, dress code, no contact with former street friends and the hardest one of all...hours that run 9 AM to 5 PM! For those used to waking up in the afternoon and going to bed early in the morning this is a huge adjustment. Not only that but you are forced to look at your past, deal with your abuse and exploitation, forgive those who have hurt you. Who would want to do that?

I’ll tell you who. It’s women like Sherry who have hit rock bottom and are afraid for their lives! Afraid the next trick will be their last! Afraid they will be tomorrow's news. They come with nothing to lose and everything to gain!

Sherry stayed with me for one year in the frontline house. She was a blast to live with! Funny, witty, strong and yes so beautiful! I watched her blossom in that year. Together, we celebrated her first New Year's clean and sober.

This past year I celebrated 11 years clean and sober with Sherry! I’ve also had the privilege of watching her become a dedicated wife, a loving mother and a strong, compassionate...and very opinionated leader in the First Nations community! Sherry is a real role model for other Native youth and women in our program. It is women like Sherry that testify, “the SA programs works!”


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