Susan was released from a local correctional facility after 10 years of incarceration. Due to the lack of emergency shelters for single women in Washington County, she was forced to stay with a man with whom she did not feel safe. Susan had older children and grandchildren in the community that she wanted to connect with. A life of substance abuse created a concern for Susan and a continual fear of relapse. She worked closely with her case manager to connect to a local Alcoholics Anonymous support group where she found comfort. She was homeless for 12 months before being accepted into a supported housing program where she continued to rely on the strong supports she had from PCMS and AA/NA. 18 months passed and Susan continued to remain sober. At 39 years old, Susan reported that this was the longest period in her adult life that she has stayed sober and out of prison. She has her own apartment and is able to see her grandchildren regularly.
Sometimes successes are brief. On Tuesday of this week, the front desk staff stated that there was a gentleman in the reception area who was released that morning from the detention center. He said that he was told to panhandle for money to get a bus ticket back to his home in Rockville. He was reluctant to do this and fearful that it would result in another arrest. He asked for help on the street and was directed to Potomac Case Management. The PCMS case manager was able to contact Gatekeepers Ministry and they agreed to help the man with the cost of the bus ticket home. He met with them at 12pm that same day and then was on his way back to Rockville.