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UGM offers hope to those in need of support in various areas of life, including employment and the issues that may hinder it. Individuals in the Employment Readiness Program have access to resources that support their holistic development. Naomi came to UGM hoping to overcome her struggle with addiction and find safe shelter. But her time in the program offered much more—a healing environment that cultivates life transformation.


 

Naomi was born and raised in Pasadena, California. Her family’s social life centered around alcohol, which led to her addiction developing in the years before she came to UGM.

 

“Prior to coming here (UGM), I had a horrible fall, and I literally broke my face. The entire left part of my face was exposed.”

 

She shared, “Prior to coming here (UGM), I had a horrible fall, and I literally broke my face. The entire left part of my face was exposed.” She had drunk about 3 times the toxic limit. Then, while walking, she slipped on ice and fell headfirst onto the sidewalk. Naomi would have died had she fallen into the street. Fortunately, she survived. She was hospitalized and released. 

Naomi in Street

The first thing Naomi did upon release was buy more alcohol. She was drinking and walking, until she realized that she couldn’t walk any further. Whenever she drank, she went into a deep depression about drinking. Naomi attempted suicide by walking into the ocean, but it was too cold so she decided against it. 

After calling 911, she went to the hospital, where they kept her for 72 hours to make sure she didn’t fall asleep. Then she was transferred to a stabilizing facility, where they gave her Zoloft for depression. That’s when she prayed, “God, I need help!” She realized that she must quit drinking, or she would die. 

 

“I wanted to know what it’s like to live soberly. Something pushed me into realizing that I wasn’t where I wanted to be. I would die without understanding who I really am, without knowing God. I knew He was always there.”

 

 

In some ways, Naomi had lived an abundant life—money, clothes, even owning a clothing store and holding management jobs. She’d done much that she'd wanted to do. She said, “I’ve always been a drunk. I wanted to know what it’s like to live soberly. Something pushed me into realizing that I wasn’t where I wanted to be. I would die without understanding who I really am, without knowing God. I knew He was always there. That’s probably why I fell onto the sidewalk and not into traffic.”

After two months at a rehab center, Naomi came to UGM in April of 2023. “I felt a warmth coming in here. Ever since then, I wake up every day with a purpose. It wasn’t about me and my selfishness. Alcoholism, addiction, is a selfish thing.”

Naomi-Smiling2

Naomi knows now that this is not an end, but a new beginning of the rest of her life. Because of that, her depression has lifted and she has given up Zoloft. She says, “I am still filled with joy!”

Naomi has opened her heart more completely to God. She doesn’t feel she really knew him before, but has experienced an amazing transformation due in part to the supportive community at UGM. She loves working in the kitchen serving others, and says, “It’s really important to get out of yourself.” 

 

 

“I felt a warmth coming in here. Ever since then, I wake up every day with a purpose.”

 

 

Naomi has many hopes for the future. While participating in the UGM Employment Readiness Program, she has had the opportunity to explore career paths, build a resume, develop interview skills, and earn work experience on-site. This short-term, residential program helps women and men prepare to enter the workforce as God-dependent, contributing members of society.

She will implement tools acquired at UGM to find training to become a Certified Nursing Assistant, a much-needed job in the community. Her dreams also include writing a book of essays and poems about her experiences and learnings in life, as well as pursuing her love of painting!

Naomi

The warm, clean, and sober environment at UGM is an effective start to breaking the cycle of addiction. For Naomi, it has meant the renewal of her life. We pray for Naomi as she continues her journey at UGM and after.

We are thankful for partners like you, whose generous gifts allow this blessed community work to continue to change the lives of one precious person at a time.

 

 

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