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Laura, Human Services

After breaking her leg and undergoing serious reconstructive surgery, Laura was enrolled in physical therapy and prescribed Percocet, a pain-relief medication. After her six months of physical therapy expired, however, Laura’s doctor stopped her prescription.

Because Laura’s body had become dependent on the pain medication, she suffered serious sickness and withdrawal symptoms. To cope with her newly formed addiction, Laura had to buy prescription drugs illegally. When this became too expensive, Laura used heroin, which ultimately led her down a dangerous path.

After getting into some trouble due to her addiction, Laura was placed in residential treatment at the United Community Center (UCC) for 28 days. Although she was at first skeptical, Laura soon came to realize that she really enjoyed therapy and was learning a lot about herself and becoming a stronger person.

“I love UCC. The staff are truly dedicated to helping people,” said Laura. “Because of the success I have experienced at UCC, I have decided that I am going to become a Certified Peer Specialist and help others overcome their addictions.”

Laura is currently in outpatient counseling and has completed all of the steps in her recovery process. She lives with her son and recently spent time with her sister, whom she had not seen in almost three years.

“I’m continuously meeting my goals and setting new goals,” said Laura. “I enjoy going to support group meetings, and I am the social person that I once was. It feels really good.”

Laura also is the co-facilitator of the UCC alumni group, a meeting time for those who have completed treatment at UCC. She hopes to help clients understand that with hard work and a desire to change, they can achieve recovery.

“The best thing that has ever happened to me was being placed in UCC’s rehabilitation program,” said Laura. “It changed my life forever.”