Turn­ing pain into hope for other peo­ple

Sunshine Coast Daily - - NEWS -

WHEN most peo­ple her age were just start­ing to drink, Ker­rie Ather­ton was giv­ing it up for good.

The Bud­erim res­i­dent was 18 when she got sober af­ter hit­ting, what she de­scribed as, one of the low­est mo­ments in her life.

“I’ve hit about three rock bot­toms in my life. The one when I was 18, ear­lier in the day I had planned to com­mit sui­cide and that night I walked into AA and knew that was it, I was ei­ther sober and clean or dead,” she said.

Thirty-eight years later she is still sober and uses her story to help oth­ers go­ing through tough times.

Two years ago she started Sto­ries of HOPE, a monthly event where peo­ple share their per­sonal jour­ney through ad­ver­sity to help oth­ers.

“I started it be­cause I had a light bulb mo­ment where I just thought I haven’t gone through all this stuff in my life for noth­ing and my pain won’t be in vain. I will use it for other peo­ple’s gain,” she said.

Now Mrs Ather­ton is tak­ing Sto­ries of HOPE even fur­ther, pub­lish­ing a book to ex­tend help to more peo­ple.

“I’d... had this idea of turn­ing Sto­ries of HOPE into a book for peo­ple who couldn’t get to the talks, so any­body who is go­ing through things can find hope from know­ing peo­ple have come out the other side of their sit­u­a­tion,” she said.

The book is avail­able for pre-or­der now and will be launched at a coun­cil-spon­sored event at Venue 114 on Fe­bru­ary 25.

For more in­for­ma­tion, visit sto­riesofhope.com.au.

If you, or some­one you know, needs help call Life­Line on 13 11 14.

Photo: Pa­trick Woods

LIFE AF­TER DRINK: Ker­rie Ather­ton founded Sto­ries of HOPE af­ter her own bat­tles with al­co­hol ad­dic­tion and de­pres­sion.

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