Success looks different to everyone
I was brought in by an EMT by the name of Andrew, on September 8, 2019. I wanted to email the Alpha House team and drop in center team and everyone who works at the center. I wanted to let you all know I have 60 plus clean days under my belt, I am currently in Edmonton, Alberta at Recovery Acres working my recovery.
Everyone at Alpha house treated me with so much kindness, I wanted to thank everyone at Alpha House for saving my life and opening a new door to my recovery. I want to let you know I am on week three of my eight week recovery program, everyone here has been super awesome. I have reconnected with my family, my friends, and continue to make new healthy friendships.
I hope to return to Alpha house as a guest to say hello when I am ready, but for now I will continue working on my recovery. I want you all to know you are doing an amazing job, the kindness you have shown will be remembered forever and I want you to be proud of yourselves. You have my Love and respect.
My Story and What the DOAP Team Means to Me
The DOAP Team is important. No, the DOAP Team is more than important – they are essential. Must- have. I have seen the DOAP Team in action; I have helped them help others while they were helping me. I have leaned on and turned to them in my darkest hours and they were there for me, every time. For small things, for big things, I’ve been able to call or reach out and know that I would be helped and taken care of. I knew and still know that I can count on their pure professionalism, and dedication to the highest levels of service. I can count on being treated with the utmost care and respect no matter what state of being I was in. I knew I would not be judged, looked down upon, or belittled because I was drunk or high, unable to walk properly, or ensure my own safety. They would be there to help get me to a safe place where I could start caring for myself.
If there is one thing I know for a fact without research or studies, it is that the DOAP Team saves lives. Everyday. In so many ways. They’ve saved my life. More than once. The DOAP Team has been there to pick me up from the mud and help clean me up; they’ve been there to catch me as I’m falling, lost, scared, and alone, reaching out and desperate for an ear, falling apart trying to find a reason to keep going. They are an awesome source of strength and inspiration to want to overcome and beat my addictions. They’ve helped to instill in me a sense of pride and self-respect unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before. I’m not afraid to look in the mirror anymore.
I was shocked and totally aghast when I read in the papers that funding for the DOAP Team was being cut and there would be a reduction of services for the team in April. The DOAP Team has stepped up for me so many times, I wanted to step up for them. I intend to do all I can to ensure the DOAP Team’s services are maintained and even grow and expand. So that others can have that sense of comfort and security the DOAP Team provides.
JD (Nov 2019)
The past five years saw me reconnecting with family. Siblings, children, grandchildren and so on. I’ve taken care of health issues such as getting a hip replaced. In general I’ve improved my quality of life. This would not have been possible had Alpha House not been there.
Due to our interactions while housed at detox, I trusted her. This is important when somebody is sorting through the mess of emotions that lead to addictions. Trusting somebody while letting go of thoughts and emotions is key to recovery. And because I trusted Mel I was able to put trust in other staff.
I was also a volunteer at Alpha House in the capacity of a craft teacher at Detox.
My intent was to drink myself to death on the streets of Calgary. Being diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver is proof that I was very close to achieving that goal. Unfortunately, I know quite a few people who have passed away on those same streets from addictions. And if not for the support I received from Alpha House I can faithfully assume that my death would have taken place.
After a few months of encouragement and motivation, G finally decided to go shopping for grocery’s – staff’s encouragement helped G to break his one year routine of going to the Pub immediately after midnight of his pay day. He was also able to buy Subway gift cards so that he can have his favourite subs when he is struggling at the end of the months. We are very proud of G for working to achieve this goal.
I found myself increasingly being the victim in life and had many runs of bad luck. More and more I drank myself to sleep, then through the day as well. I reached the point of losing jobs, not affording food, haircuts, direly needing dental work, laundry, cleaning supplies, and other basics. I went to A.A. And realized I needed more help than A.A. All the recovery centres said I had to detox first before any consideration.
I went to Alpha House where I laid on a mat in a parkade. I asked to go to the detox upstairs and was soon admitted. They put food in me, a place to shower and a haircut, and helped me get into Fresh Start Recovery.
I went to Fresh Start and worked my butt off studying extra, focusing in class, applying myself and being honest with myself.
I have a very long stretch of sobriety now, live in a great place and enjoy my work. I have a good balance in life and see things from new viewpoints and deal with adversity differently.
It all started laying on a mat sweating with the dry heaves in the shelter at Alpha House.
K came to the office and explained to staff that despite having money from receiving her GST cheque she stayed in and hasn’t spent it. She knew the importance of staying in and remaining sober to see the doctor regarding her health.