Local survivors share their Stories of Hope
A PAIR of Sunshine Coast locals from polar opposite backgrounds, but bound by a similar tale of survival, will share their stories of surviving addiction at the Sands Tavern later this month.
Fox, as he prefers to be called, was an American sniper who survived stints on the front line of the Iraq and North Korean wars.
But he was wrecked by a subsequent drug addiction – and he intends to relive his horror story of depression, PTSD and alcohol and prescription addiction.
As will Tess, a local mother whose son had developed a full-blown ice addiction by the time his 16th birthday rolled around.
The pair are guest speakers at Stories of Hope’s next community event to be held at the Sands Tavern on September 26 at 7pm.
Stories of Hope founder Kerrie Atherton, herself a recovering alcoholic turned counsellor, said she started hosting the monthly events to meet the demand of people battling substance abuse, especially ice.
“Ice is a shocking drug that devastates families and ruins peoples lives so quickly,” she said.
“I know from the counselling work I do the damage it has on not only the user but also their family and friends.
“When they’re on it they cross every moral boundary they ever knew and the guilt they feel when they come down is so sad to see.
“It has them totally hooked in one or two times and from that day on their lives are torn apart – and the recovery from the withdrawals and side-effects can take two or three years.”
Ms Atherton began hosting Stories of Hope events in January this year and she recently started hosting similar bi-monthly events at Nambour.
“We hold them for anybody who is need or is lonely or is going through a hard time or battling an addiction,” she said.
“The two speakers at the next event are truly inspirational and their stories will really hit home for the people attendance.
“The common theme is hope – where’s there is hope there is life.”
HELP OUT: Stories of Hope host monthly meetings to share stories to help others.