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Stories of Hope

Vanessa’s Story (a female of 34 years old):

I used.  I abused.  I was humbled and then I asked for help.  But most importantly, I surrendered.   By then, I had lost everything that I held close to my heart and then some.  I was homeless and had nowhere to turn.  Addiction brought me to a place I thought I would never, ever go. At the end of that road, I found myself at Somerville Detox seeking help.  (Sadly that facility is now closed.)  Sitting in detox, I was overwhelmed by the shear fact that my life was destroyed, all I had was lost.  After seven days in detox, I was pointed in a direction that led me down Highland Avenue to CASPAR’s Phoenix Drop-In Center.

I remember walking down the street sobbing.  When I met with the Phoenix Center staff, I began to hear a message of hope.  But I was also asked a question - “what was I willing to do?”   I began to find out what I was willing to do that day.  I moved into the ACCESS transitional program for newly sober people at CASPAR’s Albany Street shelter and I started doing the work.  Every day I attended group meetings, listening to other addicts share stories and received critical support that kept me moving forward on my journey to getting my life back.  Three weeks into my stay at ACCESS I got the
word that a bed was available for me at CASPAR’s Womanplace. After many months of living at Womanplace, and then a year at GROW supporting housing program of CASPAR, I moved to my own place.

I really began this journey at ACCESS.  It gave me a safe place to learn about my disease and grow as a person. I don’t know what I would have done had it not been for the experiences I had there and the people I met along the way.  It is such an important part of my life.  My gratitude toward the staff and clients of all CASPAR’s programs will be with me forever.

There are sick and suffering addicts out there right at this moment that need a place to start fresh, people willing to do the work to get their lives back.  I pray that there will always be places like CASPAR.  Alone we can’t.  Together we can! Recovery is possible, I am an example of that!