Richard is a decorated Army veteran and college graduate, with 13 years’ experience in IT technical support. Yet, as a result of service in the Iraq war, he developed Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSD). To cope he turned to alcohol and substance abuse and lost his job because of under-performance. The timing was terrible; Richard has three children and had just purchased a new car. More substance abuse and great depression followed. One night Richard saw a Veterans Administration (VA) commercial that urged anyone with more than two listed PTSD symptoms to call toll-free. Richard responded and was assigned a case manager, who set up a treatment program. That same case manager opened the door to another possibility for Richard–New Hope Enterprises.
Richard was accepted at New Hope and says “STRIVE (training) was an eye-opener, but I felt alive again.” As a veteran, Richard was familiar with direct communication, rules and requirements and was able to help his classmates who struggled with rules. On the day before STRIVE graduation New Hope offered him the job of intern trainer for STRIVE. Richard was elated!
With his background in IT technical support, Richard enrolled in Microsoft Office training at New Hope, expanding and deepening his knowledge of its applications. Richard was promoted to lead the Microsoft Office Certification program and assisted participants to become skilled, work-ready users.
Richard has achieved further success. Now hired by the Atlanta VA Medical Center as a Peer Support Specialist for veterans suffering from both PTSD and substance abuse, he uses all his personal experience and training to set them on the road to recovery and renewed hope.
Today Richard feels in full control of his life and enthusiastically credits New Hope Enterprises and STRIVE for helping him achieve that. He not only helped himself at New Hope, but helped other people to grow and change for the better. Richard says New Hope staff “is more than staff; they are family.” He plans to recommend New Hope Enterprises to anyone ready to make a change in their life for the better.