Dean is a quiet and respectful man of 61 years from Brockville. He worked to maintain his sobriety, but losing five people close to him, including his mother and brother, drove him to return to alcohol to cope with his pain.
In 2019, after he decided to give up drinking, he travelled to Ottawa seeking help. Dean spent four months in a shelter dorm with seven other clients, which could be challenging. “I would sometimes think about leaving, but not until after lunch,” he smiles, a testimony to how good Chef Ric’s meals are.
Dean was then admitted to a residential treatment bed. He praises The Mission’s approach to addiction as “really good, and making all the difference.” Dean also received help to replace his birth certificate and health card, complete his income taxes, access his employment insurance and Canada Pension Plan, and secure a new apartment. “The people here have been just outstanding.”
Dean felt safe at The Mission as the pandemic unfolded. “I felt as safe here as I would in a hospital. The precautions they take are really good.” Dean appreciated Mission staff finding ways to deliver essential programs to support clients, such as virtual SMART Recovery meetings, the resumption of Chaplaincy services, and other supports. “This place has been a Godsend. I know for a fact that I wouldn’t be sober — I couldn’t do it on my own.”