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Joe and Amanda #HopeDealers

We are Joe and Amanda Fowler

In March of 2018 we found ourselves homeless for the fourth time. Alcohol was tearing our lives apart. We were on the verge of divorce, we had nowhere to go, but we knew we needed change. We found ourselves at New Beginning Sanctuary. And that is exactly what we needed.

In order for us to enter the program we had to agree not to spend time together outside of meetings. It was really hard. But it helped us build a healthy foundation and to focus on our own recovery.

All of our meetings were held at the Springfield Recovery Community Center (SRCC). SRCC began to be the place where we learned to interact outside of our addiction together. That separation allowed us to reboot our marriage and learn how to build a healthy foundation for it. We were getting clean together. Healing together. Growing together. We were changing.

SRCC became a big part of our lives. For 21 months it became like our second home (and still is today). It was more than a place we went to for classes. It was more than a place for me to do the 240 hours of community service I racked up on a DWI charge. It was a place where we were surrounded by family. A place where worth was restored. A place hope grew.

When a program changes your life in such a drastic way, you can't help but to give back! We managed houses for New Beginning Sanctuary helping others on their path to recovery. Then we had the opportunity to work for the program that helped us find our way.

We eventually moved out of New Beginning Sanctuary into our own apartment. However, we continue to work for New Beginning Sanctuary (I do maintenance for the houses and Amanda assists with the events), we teach classes at SRCC, and we assist with activities and events there as well. It's crazy to think of how far we have come. From being in the classes to teaching them, ain't God good!

Amanda and I took the steps to get certification. We are both Certified Peer Specialist here in Springfield. Amanda works with the Tree Grant at Burrell. And I work at The Burrell Crisis Center. We both have the opportunity to help others struggling with substance abuse and mental health crisis’.

Through New Beginning we started attending Redemption at The Well. We got connected with Pastor Brandon Lien, and God started moving in power. Not too long after that we got connected with his brother, Pastor Joshua Lien. Pastor Josh planted a church in Aurora and asked me to lead worship. God is just amazing.

Without New Beginning Sanctuary and Springfield Recovery Community Center we would have never had the solid foundation with God that we do today. Today we have a whole new life that we never imagined possible.


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