Marva R.



“I am a 47-year-old recovering alcoholic and crack addict and a very grateful FOCUS alumni. I arrived at FOCUS on April 10, 2008. I had been in intensive, inpatient treatment during the previous three and a half months and was still only on my 25th day of sobriety.”

I was hopeless, defeated, broken and basically homeless. Someone donated the admission fee and gave me $200 to help with my food and essential items. FOCUS changed my self-perception and my outlook on life. FOCUS gave me a life! I thank God for FOCUS!

I used crack and alcohol on a daily basis for 16 years. I am a convicted felon with both federal and state offenses. During my last months of addiction, I lived with my mother and invalid step-father, from whom I stole more than $10,000 in both cash and credit-card purchases. I stole from my church’s Sunday school treasury, and lived in a state of complete darkness, unable to keep a job … I was a leach on society. I had been ordered to Drug Court, which I did not successfully complete, had been in treatment twice before and just could not get sober. Thank God for FOCUS!

FOCUS provided a safe, supportive environment with tough love, taught me discipline through adherence to the resident handbook and simple chores and how to live as a productive member of a group and society. The structured environment, firm and loving staff, the required individual therapy and 12-step work, the accountability groups and other lectures were all essential to my transformation. Thank God for FOCUS!

As the result of my stay at FOCUS, my life has changed in the following ways: I have paid restitution to the state of Alabama and regained the right to vote; I have repaid debits to my mother, most of my creditors, church and other family members; for the first time in my adult life I have a savings and checking account in good standing; I have invested money for retirement; I am a full-time student with a 3.0 average; I am a successful small-business owner. I am grateful for all these things. However, the greatest thing FOCUS has given me is the gift of self love, a sense of belonging, the ability to dream and the courage to follow my dreams. FOCUS gave my daughter the mother she deserves and my mother the daughter she always knew I could be! Thank God for FOCUS!