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From Client to Co-Worker

Posted on July 17, 2017


Kellye DeBerry, Alumni Coordinator at Hanley Center


A little over two years ago, the Hanley Center saved my life. 


My alcoholism and drug addiction brought me to my knees and I had succumbed to the idea that I would live the rest of my life in misery. I was physically, mentally and spiritually broken and I had little to no hope that things would ever change.


Luckily, my loving family, who I am eternally grateful for, refused to give up hope and sent me to treatment at the Hanley Center.  


It was here that I was given the Big Book and told that there was a spiritual solution for my alcoholism. My life had become so unmanageable and my way of living clearly had not been working, so I completely surrendered to the 12 Step program of action and began following the suggestions given to me by the staff and clients in treatment. I stayed in inpatient treatment for ninety days, went to transitional living for forty-five days, attended IOP and went to sober living for over a year. I got a sponsor who took me through the Twelve Steps, I went to meetings, got a home group, I worked with other alcoholics, and I got service commitments.  And day by day my life started to change for the better.


I started volunteering at the Hanley Center because I wanted to give back to a truly amazing place that gave so much to me.  


I got involved with the weekly alumni meetings and the monthly anniversary night celebrations. I made calls to alumni, making connections and sharing my experiences about treatment and recovery with them.  Eventually, I was offered the alumni coordinator position at the Hanley Center and I jumped on it! It was an absolute dream come true to work at such an incredible place and was evidence that God was working in my life.


I wake up every morning feeling blessed and full of gratitude that I have the opportunity to share my experience, strength and hope with current and former clients of the Hanley Center. 


I stay in contact with alumni after they discharge from treatment, plan and organize alumni meetings and anniversary night celebrations, and play a part, whether it be big or small, in people’s recovery.  I get to witness the miracles of sobriety each and every day – how amazing is that?