Below you'll see some success stories from individuals who have used the First Day Forward program to help them progress forward from addiction and incarceration.
"My name is Brandon and I am a person in long-term recovery. I used drugs and alcohol for almost 20 years to cope with my dad’s death and my mom abandoning me at nine years old. After all that time using, hurting my family, and going to jail and rehabs, I finally landed myself in jail with a robbery charge - facing 13 years. While I was incarcerated I was introduced to the "First Day Forward" program. After being accepted, I began working with a Peer Support Specialist and started participating in a drug court program. Because of the new found willingness I gained while working with peer support, I was sentenced to five years, probated to drug court, and released into society. Since I started using the tools I acquired through First Day Forward, I have custody of my children again and have kept gainful employment at Achieving Recovery Together as a Peer Support Specialist - working with others just like the Peer Support Specialist that worked with me. Ever since my first day out, I keep doing my best to move forward. First Day Forward was really beneficial for my recovery. It helped me connect to the recovery community within Clark County and the resources I needed to attain long term recovery. If it wasn’t for this wonderful program I would have gone back to using drugs/alcohol. This would have ultimately led to death or jail. I am forever grateful for this program and encourage all who can to participate. I have been moving forward since the first day of my release!" - Brandon, FDF participant
"The benefits of the FDF program have been amazing for me personally. I can now see what makes me tick and what leads me to think that I can use. It's all excuses. I have to work on myself and figure out why I turn to use before I can live a better life. The reason I ended up with a record is because I would rob anyone to make myself feel “well.” This is true for most people like me. When it comes to my anger, I have learned I use it as an excuse because I can't let go of my trauma. Until I get to the root of my past, I will continue to make the same mistakes. This program helped me to realize all of this. It's refreshing to finally have something that helps me understand where I went wrong." - Donnie, FDF participant
"My name is Casey, I am a 35 year old heroin addict from Winchester, KY. My clean date is 11/05/20. I am a client of ART and in a program called First Day Forward…..this is how it helped save my life. I can remember sitting in jail as a result of my addiction feeling hopeless, alone, and totally lost. Having zero ties to anyone in recovery or any support to help me stay clean outside of jail. I heard about a program called First Day Forward that ART had just started and all I knew is that it was for addicts like me. So I signed up. I am so grateful for that decision because I know it’s a big part of why I am still clean today. First Day Forward gave me hope and the support I truly needed. They helped me start my recovery from inside the jail. The program helped me with so many things from finding me a bed at a treatment center, driving me from jail to the treatment center. They bought me clothes, hygiene items, helped me get my birth certificate, social security card, just so many things…..but most of all they gave me hope and support. They helped love me back to life and gave me the strength in knowing I wasn’t alone anymore. It’s a group of people just like me and I love them all. First Day Forward changed my life and put people in my path who believe in me and helped me to believe in myself. Thank you, with all of my heart, First Day Forward and everyone at ART!" - Casey, FDF participant
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