A Heartfelt Story by an EDAS Employee

Date Added: 12/11/2020

"Dear EDAS,

I'm writing this testimony to attempt to tell you the regard I hold you in and the love I feel for you for enriching my life and giving me the opportunity to demonstrate my gratitude, share my experience and empower the lives of many many others.

I first had dealings with EDDAAS (as it was known) in 2004 at the summer gathering, supporting a friend who I had helped complete her volunteer course work, I met a wonderful lady called Kit Edwards who explained to me the ethos of EDAS and I was sold, going on to do the volunteers course myself and commit myself to giving up a couple of hours a week, to make coffee and man the phones (or so I thought) becoming part of a family that was dedicated to helping transform the lives of people who desperately needed to be loved, supported and guided to a different way of life.

As the years wore on and my life progressed, the skills that EDAS was giving me and the trust showed in me, by my supervisor, colleagues, the manager (my mentor) and the clients were all working to boost my confidence, self-esteem and professionalism to an extent that I was given the opportunity write up a relapse prevention program and build a case load of my own.

When I think about those days it blows me away, how an old junkie from a pit town in the midlands was showed so much trust and faith and showed so much love and support - being given the chance to develop personally and professionally.

EDAS (Poole) really got up and running after I had been involved with the Bournemouth service for a few years and I was offered the chance for more sessional work - helping to get the evening shifts running, again a massive demonstration of trust in me, allowing me the chance to nurture, support and motivate volunteers in the same way that I had been supported under the beautiful ethos that is EDAS.

As the years went by more and more opportunities were being given to me to grow and develop professionally, full time work (for the first time in years) and the opportunity to express myself in a dynamic way, under the supervision of my mentor was such a blessing, going on to supervise a team of wonderful people who have gone on to become friends, facilitate diverse groups such as relapse prevention, emotional management, criminal justice (where my heart felt enriched) watching my clients turn their lives around, my own expanding one to one case loads and delivering a mentoring program, becoming a part of building a recovery community in Poole.

EDAS gave me so much and no matter what I gave back it, it will never equal the confidence and sense of empowerment, self esteem, professionalism, dignity, discipline and experience that EDAS gave me. When I left to move back to Nottingham I believe that I left a piece of my heart within EDAS and I grudge it not.

When I see how EDAS is flourishing it fills me with joy, thinking that I was given the privilege of being a part of the 50 year history of such a wonderful service that has transformed the lives of many people. Thank you EDAS for everything x"

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