Community and the Path to Recovery

Community and the Path to Recovery

Nestled in a quiet, unassuming neighbourhood in Saanich, Jaymac Place houses a unique “family” that’s built on shared community, lived experience, and now, brotherhood.

“I have been clean and sober for one and a half years now and I have come a long way, with the help of the staff at Our Place,” says Patrick, a recent graduate of New Roads and now a resident at Jaymac Place. “My experience here has been really great, and I am going through this process together with everyone else.”

Patrick holds his darkest secrets close, as many of us do, and acknowledging his past is not something he wants to focus on anymore. He shares his story in broad strokes – growing up in the foster care system, finding himself in the criminal justice system, addicted and lost. Eventually his path led him to New Roads.

“Everyone at New Roads, and now Jaymac Place, has supported me through this process of recovery and healing,” says Patrick. “Together with each other, one united, in the path towards

Funded through the generosity of three local families, Jaymac Place is Our Place’s inaugural second-stage transitional home in the community. Some came from incarceration. Some came from a hard life of living on the streets with severe addiction. All took the brave step to enroll in the intensive recovery program at New Roads in View Royal. The home is a place where (up to) six men – all graduates from New Roads Therapeutic Recovery Community – come to heal, grow, and work together to successfully integrate back into society.

Their stories may vary, but what they all have in common is a goal to work together in community – a new family – towards long-term sobriety, healthy minds and bodies, and a chance to move
forward, accepting and leaving their trauma-filled pasts behind.

At Jaymac Place, residents work together to care for and maintain the home and yard. They also learn life skills: grocery shopping, cooking healthy meals, and paying bills and rent. The minimum stay is six months but could be longer, depending on the individual. The men also schedule daily or weekly meetings together to organize and structure tasks, as well as attend regular group support session through Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, or SMART Recovery.

During his year-long stay at New Roads, Patrick’s talent and passion for art was reignited. Now, with a supportive, encouraging network and a solid community surrounding him, Patrick is beginning to take his love of art to another level. His drawing of “The Eagle”, on the placemat enclosed, is just one example. For Our Place Society, Patrick has also created a button in honour of Indigenous Peoples Day, as well as a series of bookmarks featuring his artwork.

Another requirement for living at Jaymac Place is that the residents must be employed or taking educational programming. Patrick took advantage of the opportunities offered at another Our Place program, Our WorkPlace. There he successfully completed the People In Progress (PIP) certificate. Participants in PIP receive six weeks of essential employability and occupational skills, four weeks of on-the-job work experience and two weeks of follow-up support to help in their job search process. It’s a program that worked for Patrick, and many other graduates. Since last November, 132 people were actively working with Our WorkPlace, and 66 are employed.

“I’ve managed to find work through the Our WorkPlace program and get my PIP certificate, furthering my education experience and life skills,” says Patrick. “I’ve now got some financial stability and have made lots of acquaintances, and actually through work as well.”

He has been busy giving back to Our WorkPlace by working on a mural, together with Morgan, an employee at the job skills training centre.

“Patrick is a great example of the continuum of care we can provide,” says Cheryl Diebel, Director of New Roads. “When he first got to New Roads, he was in really rough shape. But he’s been working hard, and using all of the supportive services that are here for him to find success. We’re very proud of him for coming full circle and finding his own path to a different life.”

Patrick is excited to see the next turn his life will take, sober and at peace with his past. “Next is the plan to work on my education, working along side my program and my job of course,” he adds. “I am doing everything I can to get a new way of life. It gets better day by day and I am doing everything possible to make sure that I am safe and sound.” And the staff at Our Place, his brothers-in-recovery at Jaymac Place and New Roads, and the new community he is building around him will be there to hold him up in this next phase of his journey.

When people surround themselves with caring, supportive, positive energy, nourishing change is possible. Your donations bring people together to create opportunities. Please join us in nourishing community so people can work together to find better pathways and more positive futures.