change lives.

Parker’s story: From addiction to recovery, and hope

Parker’s descent into addiction began slowly enough.

It started with drinking and smoking a “bit too much” pot. Then he fell into the wrong group.

Seeking acceptance among a group of friends with similar struggles, he became hooked on smoking methamphetamine. Before long, he had cut off ties with his family and old friends.

He was spiralling now. Becoming rail thin and scraggly, he roamed the streets, crashing in drug houses and at the local shelter. His low point came when, distraught over his grandmother’s death, he overdosed twice.

An outreach worker at Neighbourhood Works, a community based, not-for-profit organization in St. Stephen, and a newly recovered friend supported and encouraged Parker to sign up for detox and Portage Atlantic, a recovery program for youth in the Sussex area.

A year after the grips of addiction took hold, Parker had finished his recovery program, repaired relationships, had a place to live and was healthier and more confident.

Neighbourhood Works was able to employ Parker for four months, providing support and mentorship in his first job since his addictions.

He has plans for his next job as well as education goals. Most importantly, he now has the tools to navigate difficult times. And he knows he has people he can turn to when he needs help – including his friends at Neighbourhood Works.