James:

"I started smoking cannabis at the age of 13 years old and then that progressed to drinking very heavily, this lasted for over 17 years. My family life was ok, they cared for me and I never went in need of anything.  I very rarely attended school because of my drinking which caused me to be in many car crashes and get into trouble with the police. 

In my mid-twenties my drinking got very bad and my life became dependant on alcohol every day and I thought I needed this to function as a person. I could not cope with the pressures of life and my way of coping with life was to drink. My health has suffered terribly because of my drinking to the point I have had cirrhosis of the liver and my legs have been damaged because of my alcohol abuse. 

My alcohol brought me to a place of isolation and I stayed in a flat that didn’t have much in it and I was depressed with no hope in life. 

I have currently been sober for nearly 2 months which is a miracle for me. I went to a church one day with my partner who attended the Street Connect Community Recovery Programme. It was in this church that I experienced the forgiveness of God but I knew I needed more support in my life to fully overcome my addiction. I met a Street Connect outreach worker through my wife’s contacts with him which resulted in me attending the Street Connect Bridge to Freedom course. I am beginning to find a purpose to my life and am able to get One-To-One support from my Street Connect worker who I meet on a weekly basis. This helps me to be able to talk through some of the issues that have bothered me over the years and has kept me in addiction. 

My hopes for the future are to continue in my recovery and to remain sober from alcohol. Not only this but it’s my hope to continue and become a more productive member of society that is able to give back to people who are going through similar experiences. I also hope to continue growing in my faith and to learn more about God’s love for me."