08 Mar From Desperation to Hope
Albert had a happy childhood, playing the sports he loved. “It was a good life,” he says. “I played baseball and soccer all through school.”
Then, when he was 16, he experienced a disappointment in his athletic career – one which set him on a path of self-destruction. “I played soccer for the state and didn’t cut it, so I got involved with the wrong people,” he says. “I started smoking marijuana and progressed to alcohol.”
For the next 32 years, Albert’s addiction consumed him. “I lost a home, relationships, jobs. I’d rather drink than go to work,” he says.
Albert came to the Mission just seeking shelter, but when he learned about our Life Change Program, he knew it was for him. “When I got here, I really didn’t know God at all,” he says. “They teach you how to be God’s friend. That’s what I am now. They’ve also taught me to always put the Lord first and that’s a big part of my sobriety.”
Albert fulfills the program’s work therapy component by working in our Thrift Store warehouse. “It’s given me a sense of normalcy and structure in life, and taught me how to be a more responsible human being,” he says.
Albert has also healed emotionally through the program. “I’ve learned how to deal with feelings I never knew I had,” he says. “Now, instead of always being angry or negative, I have a very positive attitude.”
Soon, Albert will move on to the next phase of the program at our sister Mission in Morristown. After graduation, he plans to return here for our Leadership Training Program and become a counselor so he can give back. “I came in off the street and the Mission gave me everything I needed – clothes, food, shelter, and the tools to be successful in life,” he says. “They teach you to be strong.”
To read this issue of The Lifeline, click here.