Jericka’s Story

When Jericka first came to Hope Ministries in 2019, she was in stage 4 kidney failure. She was using a walker, had recently been living in a nursing home, and she’d been told she had the liver function of a 65-year- old who had been drinking for decades.

She was only 28.

“I was lost, broken, stuck in addiction,” she remembers. “I felt like a failure.”

Jericka’s health issues all stemmed back to an alcohol addiction that began when she was only 15. She started drinking after her mom passed away . . . and just didn’t stop. “Drinking made everything go away, all the pain,” she says. “It was a way to numb the feelings and try to cope with life. But it led me into disaster.”

Jericka says one drink was enough to send her spiraling, but finding her way out of the spiral has been a long and winding journey. Looking back, she admits she wasn’t fully committed to her recovery when she first walked through our doors, and ended up leaving our program early—twice. “I didn’t want to take accountability for my actions,” she says.

But that changed in March 2022 when she once again found herself falling back into addiction and making choices she knew deep down weren’t good for her. It was a Hope Ministries graduate who reached out to Jericka and convinced her to make a hard, humbling decision.

“It was difficult to come back to Hope Center. I had a lot of pride at first. But I’m taking this seriously now. This is not a game, it’s my life.”

And now, nearly two years later, Jericka says she’s a new person, inside and out. For one thing, she’s seen drastic improvement in her physical health.

But it’s her spiritual and emotional health that have had the biggest impact on her sobriety—and her whole life. While at Hope Center, she has done the hard work of pursuing a new way of living. “I’ve been figuring out what life looks like without addiction and learning who I am in Christ.”

As of this month, Jericka is one year and ten months sober! She’s enrolled in college classes and is pursuing a degree in Human Services. She also has a part-time job. She’s earned her driver’s license and bought a car, is active in her church and she’s looking forward to graduating from our program soon and transitioning into independent living.

She’s found new purpose, too: “I want to help others the way I’ve been helped. I know what it’s like to go through addiction. I know what it’s like to be without. I know what it’s like to feel abandoned and to need someone to say, ‘I’ve got you. I believe in you.’”

“I can still see a little bit of shame when I look at myself,” she adds, “but the more I focus on the Lord, the more I see freedom. I keep praying for more of Him, less of me.”