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Our Stories of Recovery series features testimonials from men and women who have benefitted from The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC) programs.

When you donate goods (clothing, accessories, appliances, furniture, etc.) to The Salvation Army’s Family Stores, you are funding programs that help people struggling with addiction to find the road to recovery.

This is Aaron’s Story:

I give thanks to The Salvation Army for giving me an opportunity to change my life. When I came to The Salvation Army I was tired.  I had given up the fight in my own life.  My thoughts and actions were backward.  I had lost touch with God and had given up all hope.

When I reached The Salvation Army doors I was scared and confused.  But the ARC has helped me change the way I think.  I have learned to put God first in my life and the other ‘things’ have begun to fall in place.

This program has helped me develop life skills, helped me learn new tools to deal with anger issues, and helped me understand chemical dependency – and, as such, I feel I understand addiction and myself a lot better!

Work therapy has also assisted me in developing structure and self discipline.  Looking back on the ‘old me’ has helped me realize how truly grateful I am to God and The Salvation Army in showing me how to change my life and giving me the tools to do so!

 

Click here to learn more about The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center programs, or to schedule a donation pick-up: http://suncoastarea.satruck.org/

 

Click here to MAKE A GIFT TODAY to help people in need!

 

Our Stories of Recovery series features testimonials from men and women who have benefitted from The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC) programs.

When you donate goods (clothing, accessories, appliances, furniture, etc.) to The Salvation Army’s Family Stores, you are funding programs that help people struggling with addiction to find the road to recovery.

This is Kimberly’s Story:

As a young woman, fashion model Kimberly Felder appeared in two magazines and a TV commercial.

“I went from a fashion model to a drug addict,” says Kimberly, who today works for The Salvation Army Ray & Joan Kroc Corps Community Center in Philadelphia.

Kimberly came from a loving, religious family (her grandfather was a pastor), but because of drugs and alcohol, she found herself living on the streets.

“I went the other way,” she says. “I was rebellious and I did my own thing.”

During her darkest days, Kimberly lived in abandoned houses and ate out of the trash. She would go to a nearby church, sit in a pew, and cry, asking God to take her life.

“I was hurting, ” she says. “My life had become totally unmanageable.”

On the night of Feb. 13, 1994, snow was falling when Kimberly called her Aunt Mary, who agreed to take her in, as long as she sought help the next day. Kimberly agreed and, after a 30–day stay in detox, she entered The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC) program in Philadelphia.

Kimberly was assigned to the ARC’s sorting room.

“I didn’t know if I wanted to stay,” she says. “Prayer was the key that kept me there. My prayer was, ‘Lord, let me die or show me how to live.’ ”

Kimberly says her aunt always told her that when she got anxious, she should pray Psalm 23 and the Lord’s Prayer.

“I prayed. I stayed. It got better for me.”

Kimberly not only earned her GED at the ARC but also was soon offered a job dispatching ARC trucks. She later became a house resident supervisor, a post she held until 1998.

“I stayed because I was afraid to go out in the world again,” she says. “Once I started to get stronger, I wanted to stay that way. There’s nothing like being clean and walking with God and having friends and being able to be in touch with your family.”

Kimberly worked in several retail management positions after leaving the ARC and always returned at Christmas to stand kettles as a form of payback to the Army.

When the Kroc Center opened in Philadelphia, Kimberly volunteered. Her effort eventually landed her a job as a staff assistant for the corps officers.

Kimberly also leads Sunbeams and works with pre–teen youth.

“My life is different and has been transformed because I have a passion to help other people,” she says. “It comes natural for me now, whether I’m on the clock or off.

“I talk with other young mothers who might be going through some troubles in their marriage. I have a moral obligation, a covenant I made to God years ago, that I will always give my time to help someone else.”

Kimberly credits several people with helping her along her journey, including Majors Earl and Deloris (Dee) Schaffer, now retired, and Majors Robert and Gayle Miga. “They were the first to believe in me,” she says. “Being ‘Saved to Serve’ is my lifelong journey.”

Kimberly now attends The Salvation Army Kroc Center as her church with her two boys and husband. As an usher, she greets people on Sunday mornings.

“I have visited and even joined other churches, but the teaching and the love has been nothing like the love that I get from The Salvation Army,” she says.

Kimberly sees herself as someone who has been through enough battles that she can help others.

“I just know I never have to live that way again,” she says. “However God needs to use me to be a preventive or supportive measure for someone else’s life, I want to be that voice. I want to be that living example that there’s a way out—and it’s not suicide.”

 

Click here to learn more about The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center programs, or to schedule a donation pick-up: http://suncoastarea.satruck.org/

 

Click here to MAKE A GIFT TODAY to help people in need!

 

Our Stories of Recovery series features testimonials from men and women who have benefitted from The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC) programs.

When you donate goods (clothing, accessories, appliances, furniture, etc.) to The Salvation Army’s Family Stores, you are funding programs that help people struggling with addiction to find the road to recovery.

This is Misty’s Story:

I was addicted to meth and homeless. On January 5th, 2013 I was arrested for possession of meth. Upon my release from jail I found myself wandering the streets thinking of where I was going to stay.

My life began to change for the better when I entered The Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center.  At first, I thought it was to rigid, and structured. I wanted to leave, but then I realized I had nowhere to go!

When I joined the “Feet on the Street” running program at the ARC I felt I was able to channel all the anger and hatred I had inside me to the difficult task of running long distance races.

Make no mistake, being in the program was hard, but I finished for the first time in my life a project I started. I have, since leaving the program, reunited with my two daughters and family, and began working in my Aunt’s restaurant.

The Salvation Army ARC has helped me in so many ways to be able to “help myself”.  I can never thank them enough!

 

Click here to learn more about The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center programs, or to schedule a donation pick-up: http://suncoastarea.satruck.org/

 

Click here to MAKE A GIFT TODAY to help people in need!

 

Our Stories of Recovery series features testimonials from men and women who have benefitted from The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC) programs.

When you donate goods (clothing, accessories, appliances, furniture, etc.) to The Salvation Army’s Family Stores, you are funding programs that help people struggling with addiction to find the road to recovery.

This is Jason’s Story:

The Salvation Army has gone above and beyond to help me. The Army has picked me up when I was at my lowest. The ARC (Adult Rehabilitation Center) has shown me how to live a productive and responsible life. They have most importantly showed me the tools to be the godly man that God has always wanted me to be.

The Salvation Army has also shown me how God can impact so many on a daily basis. I feel that I owe The Salvation Army so much, but the only way I can show my appreciation is to continue to live a Christian life and share with others about how The Salvation Army has impacted my life in such a positive way.

 

Click here to learn more about The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center programs, or to schedule a donation pick-up: http://suncoastarea.satruck.org/

 

Click here to MAKE A GIFT TODAY to help people in need!

Our Stories of Recovery series features testimonials from men and women who have benefitted from The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC) programs.

When you donate goods (clothing, accessories, appliances, furniture, etc.) to The Salvation Army’s Family Stores, you are funding programs that help people struggling with addiction to find the road to recovery.

This is Jeff’s Story:

My life completely revolved around my heroin addiction. My addiction was consuming my life, destroying relationships, and everything I ever cared about. I found myself bouncing from place to place, and tried to stop many time without success. A series of events lead me to a decision to give God a chance and I went to The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC).

I am now 5 months into the 6 month program and I can say that I can see the changes in my life. I have spent most of my time on the loading docks receiving the donations that many very generous people have donated. I have a sense of pride knowing that I have been involved in the process of helping others through The Salvation Army.

My physical well being has greatly improved with the great food that the kitchen staff has prepared us, and the access to a weight room. I have also regained self-confidence through the journals that we have to complete for each level. The positive relationships that are created with the staff and others that I have met here have helped bring me through some challenging times.

The most important thing I have gained is a relationship with God. I would have never considered give Jesus Christ a chance if it was not for The Salvation Army.

Now I look at the future with hope. I have a very supportive family and with their help, the tools I’ve learned, and God’s help, I know that I have an exciting future.

 

Click here to learn more about The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center programs, or to schedule a donation pick-up: http://suncoastarea.satruck.org/

 

Click here to MAKE A GIFT TODAY to help people in need!

Our Stories of Recovery series features testimonials from men and women who have benefitted from The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center programs.

When you donate goods (clothing, accessories, appliances, furniture, etc.) to The Salvation Army’s Family Stores, you are funding programs that help people struggling with addiction to find the road to recovery.

This is John’s Story:

My name is John D. Epps and I was born in Zion, IL. Due to my drug addiction, most of my family didn’t think I would reach my current age of 55.

At the age of 20, I had a son on the way and was smoking crack cocaine. For the next three decades, my life was up and down. I routinely found myself in jail and jumping from job to job. I would sleep all day and run the streets all night. On one occasion my mother called me a “crackhead”; something that was certainly true; but hurt to hear my mother say it. Several years later, my mother apologized for calling me a “crackhead”. During this conversation I asked her to pray for me. She replied that she has never stopped praying for me. This was the start of a new beginning for me.

I found the Waukegan ARC and completed the program six months later. While at the Waukegan ARC, I received my GED. I learned a lot in the program, including the importance of getting up, suiting up, and showing up. I graduated from the program and stayed clean for two and a half years. I went to work for a temp service with the philosophy of getting up, suiting up, and showing up. I was directly hired by the company I was working for; however, this was the beginning of the end for me, again. After having a significant amount of cash in my pocket again, I felt like I no longer needed meetings, God, or Church. I began to lean on my understanding and the day quickly came when I was back on the streets. I was back in the same misery, drinking alcohol and smoking crack cocaine.

After having a taste of sober living, I wanted it back. This time I went to the Milwaukee ARC. Since then, God has restored relationships with my family and friends. 4 years and 23 days ago today, I graduated from the Milwaukee ARC and became the Resident Manager. I thank God for The Salvation Army and the countless people who have assisted me along the way.

 

Click here to learn more about The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center programs, or to schedule a donation pick-up: http://suncoastarea.satruck.org/

 

Click here to MAKE A GIFT TODAY to help people in need!

Our Stories of Recovery series features testimonials from men and women who have benefitted from The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center programs.

When you donate goods (clothing, accessories, appliances, furniture, etc.) to The Salvation Army’s Family Stores, you are funding programs that help people struggling with addiction to find the road to recovery.

 

This is Antoni’s Story:

I grew up in the Ida B. Wells housing project in Chicago. It was the exposure of drugs, alcohol, and violence that shaped a false identity for me. Drugs and alcohol served as a veil to the reality of a lost society, with two options for an African-American male in the inner city of Chicago; prison or death. At 15 years of age, I was a full blown addict with little hope or desire.

By the age of 19, drugs and alcohol were my only motivation and violence as a source of control. At 19 years old, I found myself serving a 25 year prison sentence.

While in prison, I shared a cell with a man whose sentence was death. While awaiting his execution, he often shared his relationship with Christ to me. After more than five years in my cell, his

day of execution had arrived. I expected him to plead for his life, but instead he handed me his bible and said “… I’ll see you later.”

Six years later I was released from prison. I wanted a different life for myself, but the only thing I knew were the streets. I lived the “street life” for the next eight years. In 2009 I was living in an abandoned basement in Milwaukee and knew I needed help.

After a two week drug binge, I was at my lowest point when I thought of my cell mate. I walked out of the abandoned basement with my cell mate’s bible. When I got outside, I found two guys talking about the Adult Rehabilitation Center. I learned it was about 10 miles away and immediately began walking.

After graduating from The Salvation Army ARC Program, I was hired as the Resident Manager. In 2011 was promoted to the Warehouse Manager’s position. I love working at the Adult Rehabilitation Center because I can do God’ work. Each and every day, I can help men understand the identity that Christ called for them. Daily I thank God for bringing me out of the “madness.”

Today I am a husband and father, but more importantly, I am a child of God.

 

Click here to learn more about The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center programs, or to schedule a donation pick-up: http://suncoastarea.satruck.org/

Click here to MAKE A GIFT TODAY to help people in need!

Our Stories of Recovery series features testimonials from men and women who have benefitted from The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center programs.

When you donate goods (clothing, accessories, appliances, furniture, etc.) to The Salvation Army’s Family Stores, you are funding programs that help people struggling with addiction to find the road to recovery.

 

This is Alonzo’s Story:

I entered the Adult Rehabilitation Center in February because, after four years of being clean and sober, I relapsed!  I owed a drug debt and I was close to losing my housing and needed to get myself back together.

Many changes have occurred since coming here!   I think the biggest change has been my attitude.  I no longer feel isolated and lonely.  I am working on a closer relationship with God.  In addition to being clean and sober, I am cigarette free!  I am starting to take care of myself physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.  I’m eating better and am exercising on a regular basis.

With my counselor, I have been able to discover and bring to light new feelings about myself.  When I look in the mirror, I see a different person.  I see one who has a renewed motivation for life and sense a strong purpose for my future.  I have a renewed relationship with my son, maintained my home I’m steadily bringing down my debt.  My time here at the Adult Rehabilitation Center has been well spent and I see a bright future ahead.  I learned from my relapse, and have the tools necessary and in place to use when needed.

I am a grateful person in recovery!

 

Click here to learn more about The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center programs, or to schedule a donation pick-up: http://suncoastarea.satruck.org/

 

Click here to MAKE A GIFT TODAY to help people in need!