When I left residential rehab 6 months ago the transition from a safe environment back in the community was a daunting prospect. My drug councillor put me in touch with the Peer Mentor Scheme. Before I even came back to my home town, my Peer Mentor called me at the rehab and reassured me and discussed with me the training opportunities and support available to me for when I returned home. This Scheme, and having a mentor, has been a real lifeline to me; I truly believe the most powerful tool a recovering addict can have is another recovering addict that has maintained their recovery, achieved abstinence and made a success of their life.
Having a mentor like this inspires me to want the same for my life. My mentor encouraged me to take part in educational training of which there were several, I took part in every training opportunity I possibly could. My self-esteem and confidence took a real boost, and my mentor stood alongside me every step of the way. The weekly drop-in is a safe environment to be in, an environment that makes you feel comfortable in your own skin and accepted just the way you are, and also a place that encourages you to reach your full potential. The kind of potential I did not know I possessed the potential my peer mentor saw in me, and encouraged me to be the best that I can be.
I’m now at University and enjoy the learning experience immensely; I recently had a job offer to be a recovery support worker. I can honestly say I would never have believed this possible for me, but when I lacked self-belief my mentor believed in me, when I was down my mentor picked me up. When I was upset and unable to see a way forward, my mentor helped me clear the way and helped me through that day.
This Scheme and the Peer Mentors should be commended for the work they do, I know recovering addicts can be difficult to work with; one quality a peer mentor possesses above others in the substance misuse sector is that they are in recovery themselves, and from an addict’s perspective that commands the utmost respect. It would be a tragedy to see this scheme come to an end, what about the people that rely on the peer mentoring scheme? In my opinion it is wrong to give such a good service to vulnerable people in different stages of recovery then snatch it away. This scheme works. I am a testament to that.
For one to one support from a Recovery Coach please call 0845 06 121 12