CLIENT STORIES

My name is Kane and I’m a proud Wiradjuri man from Cowra. My family moved from Cowra when I was young and I grew up in Western Sydney and lived in a home with a lot of violence, filled with fear.
When I started high school, I stopped caring about life. I didn’t care about myself and didn’t care if I died. I committed crimes and found myself in juvenile detention by the time I was 14. I was completely shattered and ended up missing 5 years of my childhood. By the time I was 19, my life continued to spiral out of control with drug use and more crime.
I became completely institutionalised, but have slowly started to change since arriving at The Glen in 2020. I’ve learnt what’s important in life and to care for myself and those around me.
I entered the transition program and completed a TAFE course, learnt how to use computers, got my driving licence back and I’m now employed part-time at The Glen. I run The Glen’s sporting programs, welcome & induct new clients and help make sure the weekly routine is organised.
I also volunteer to do educational talks to young people, and share my story of how drug and alcohol affected my life.
I’m so grateful for what The Glen has done for me and my family.
My name is Jeremy. I am from Sydney originally but lived on the Central Coast for the past 26 years.
I have been using drugs and alcohol since the early age of 15 when I started earning a wage and have been battling the disease of addiction ever since. I have also abused prescription medication for year whilst in the midst of my drinking.
I have been through The Glen twice but could never manage to stay clean because I would disconnect from the people who I meet in recovery until I find myself making excuses for my drinking. Because of my drinking I have lost some of my mobility, I struggle to walk at times and I have brain damage and I have had a stroke..
What I have learnt so far is that my life is reduced to a mere existence while in active addiction, to combat against this I need to take with me the tools that I am learning at The Glen. I know if I return to active addiction I am a big chance of dying and I have far too much life to live.
I have kids and grandkids that I want in my life and I hope to one-day dance with my daughter at her wedding.
Today I am alive, not simply existing.
# Trust in others who want the best in you!
Hi my name is Craig I come from La Perouse, Sydney. I have been using drugs as a coping mechanism from childhood trauma, which I could never come to terms with and haunted me most of my life. Drugs would instantly numb every bit of my anger and pain. I started losing everything – my family, my NRL career and nearly my life in the end until I hit rock bottom and found my way into The Glen. I was offered everything I never had before – Counsellors, clinicians and staff who all helped me through my grief and trauma. I found my self-worth, my happiness and my new found passion in helping people.
Since leaving The Glen I am now the alcohol and other drug worker at my Local Aboriginal Lands Council of La Perouse where I have the opportunity to help where I can. I share what was given to me by The Glen and now live a far better life than expected. I’ll forever be grateful to The Glen for what they did for me. I’m grateful for all the staff, counsellors, the boys I went through with, and all the people who volunteer their time to help a broken man. It’s unbelievable.
I look back at old pictures and see how Broken and lost from years of hiding my trauma and how badly in addiction I was and I now have no shame no guilt no mask to cover it.
Today I look at my photos I have life back I’m strong again I’m the father I wanted to be I’m connected with good people again I’m no longer ohh he’s another one who could’ve went further in sport I’m doing something i love and that’s trying to help others sport is just fun for me now I’m able to be a father and be present and love my son unconditionally where as before I was afraid to ill never be able to thank The Glen and all the people in there for saving my life.
Life is good ❤️
My name is Dale. I am 42 years old and I am from Wollongong on the South coast of NSW.
I have struggled with a drug addiction since the age of 13, starting off on marijuana then after the death of my brother at age 18 I found myself using ice to escape the pain. I have always justified my drug use and didn’t believe I had a problem because I held down a job for most of my addiction.In the past I have moved to different towns and states to start fresh. I always found myself in the same cycle of using drugs and losing employment though.
I first came to The Glen in 2018, I left after completing a period in transition setting myself up with employment and accommodation on the Central Coast. At the same time I started a family with my partner of 7 years.
7 months after leaving The Glen, I was too busy and started disconnecting from my new friends and support group. I found myself using drugs again which went on a downward spiral for 6 months before finally admitting defeat and returning back to the safety of The Glen.
I have been back at The Glen now for 10 weeks and have learnt that I can’t mask all of my issues with working and distracting myself with other activities. This time I have taken full advantage of all of the counselling staff onsite including the grief and trauma therapists, parent programs and the relationships counselling that I am setting up after completion of The Glen in a couple of weeks time. I have learnt that “Vulnerability is the key to serenity”.
My name is Judd and I have been using drugs since I was 13 years old. A young kid struggling with life from the get go, being under the care of the Minister and bouncing around from house to house with many different foster parents. I feel I had lost my identity really early on in my life.
I feel that I have never had the chance to settle down and find myself due to various situation which had me trying to mask my emotions and blend in with a society I’ve never felt a part of.
Since coming to ‘The Glen’ I’ve learnt that I do belong.
The lessons and general life skills I’ve learnt at ‘The Glen’ will help me live a balanced and controlled life in the community. I feel that I was once a young broken man, unable to self-heal, and now I am a young gentleman ready to live life to the full extent with normality. Thanks to The Glen.
Hi, I’m Gerry. I’m 27 years old and have been struggling with addiction for the past 13 years. Before coming to The Glen I was homeless and felt really hopeless. My life was truly unmanageable. It was when I found myself in a jail cell that I knew I had to change my life and break the cycle of addiction.
I have been at The Glen now for 5 months. I’ve completed the 12-week program and am now in transition. I have completed the money dreams program which has showed me how to save money for the things I need. I have recently bought myself a motorbike and still have some savings which will allow me to move into an apartment when I leave The Glen. I have found myself a job and I am 10 months clean and sober. My life just keeps getting better and better every day. Thanks to the people at The Glen for teaching me how to love myself again.

My name is Aidan and I’m from Ettalong. I am 30 years old and I have been using drugs and alcohol since the age of 16. For the past 14 years I have been a functioning alcoholic without any
major time off the drink until I came into The Glen centre in May 2020. This is my first time in rehab and I am now 3 and a half months clean and sober.

Before coming to The Glen I consumed alcohol daily to try and escape the reality of what happened throughout my life and the daily struggles I faced. When first got to The Glen I
was feeling overwhelmed with anxiety, sleep deprivation and inside I felt spiritually and mentally
dead. I lost passion for life and felt like my world was closing in on me and can honestly say I felt like death wasn’t too far away.

Today I have good people in my life that tell me what I need to hear rather than what I want to hear. I have a daily program what I practise that keeps me connected to my inner spirit and to the people around me. Before coming to The Glen I felt dead inside, today I feel really positive and when I wake from my sleep I want to live and enjoy my life.

37 years of age and sitting in the cells after I had been arrested for drink driving and assaulting police. I was thinking over and over “What have I done? How do I tell my boss what has happened?” Knowing I may lose my job as a Director with a job that gave me purpose and direction, and I loved doing because I loved helping my people.

Turning back the clock 6 months earlier I had lost my Nan. I loved my Nan. I sat by her beside while she took her last breath because I promised her she wouldn’t die alone. I loved her with all my heart. I found it difficult to adjust – I threw myself back into my job and started travelling all over the state. I would find myself sitting on a plane with tears in my eyes and saying “wake up to yourself –  stop crying and ignore these feelings”. I suppressed these feelings with binge drinking and drugs on the weekends with mates. Because that’s what we do – men don’t talk or deal with their feelings, they mask it with drugs and alcohol.

3 months later we got a call to say no one had seen my cousin for a couple of days so we jumped in the car and drove to her house. The neighbours were all out the front and said there was maybe a window at the back open, so I climbed through the back window and yelled out her name a few times. I was hoping she wasn’t there but something inside was telling me she was. As I walked to her bedroom she was laying on the bed. It looked like she was asleep but I knew she was gone. It took me a long time to push those images out of my head because I every time I closed my eyes at night I could see her laying on the bed.

My cousin and I were thick as thieves growing up but I had pushed her away. I had hated her was using my nan to feed her drug habit. I was still struggling with my Nan’s death and now my cousin’s death but also driving myself back into work because the organisation had me going above and beyond. I wasn’t dealing with any of the grief or the depression I was feeling. I was slowly being dragged down.

Fast forward to my arrest. I spoke to my barrister and he suggested I do something about my binge drinking to stay out of jail. I took a good look at myself and knew that the only time I had ever got myself into trouble is when I had been binge drinking I always thought it was something I can control but really it controls you. I spoke to my boss and I enrolled in a traffic offenders program and had counselling every week. I then made a call to The Glen and spoke to Uncle Glen, who I knew through boxing, and asked for help. I was apprehensive and a little scared about it – would I make it through the 3 months?

The Glen program helped me heal. It helped me to take time to love myself again. It helped me to connect with my Culture through dance and understand people I would have otherwise looked down on because society says people that take drugs daily are junkies and people that drink too much are alcoholics or bums and they are no good.

The Glen offers a place where you can get help and be reborn again. You are accepted for the mistakes you have made and not judged. One thing I learnt in The Glen is some people can do things in moderation and there are some people that can’t at all and I am one of those people that can’t and it took me a long time to accept it.

I have been 2.5 years clean now and work full time again. I may not be the centre of attention at a party or pub anymore because I’m not the drunkest, making a fool of myself and embarrassing myself and loved ones. But I’m ok with that – I don’t want to drive people away from me. I want to have more people around me. Every day is a new day and being clean and sober takes time but I’m happy with the life I have chosen. I may still get things wrong in relationships with loved ones and make mistakes from time to time but I don’t turn to the bottle for answers anymore.