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Addicted America: 'I was so weak with low self esteem that I let it take over me'

Centro Latino Americano in Eugene, Ore. (SBG)
Centro Latino Americano in Eugene, Ore. (SBG)
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64 year-old Jose Moore struggled with a meth addiction for more than 20 years.

"I was so weak with low self esteem that I let it take over me, I wanted to get away from the pain but it was there," he says.

He'd gone through Centro Latino Americano's program before.

He relapsed in January 2020, but has been sober for over a year now.

His recovery is possible through Centro's support, which is getting its own boost to the tune of nearly $200,000 in state grants.

"Our main objective is to increase client engagement, provide skill building for staff," explains Basilio Sandoval with Centro Latino Americano.

It's money from Measure 110, which decriminalized small possession of drugs and funds recovery efforts through cannabis revenue.

The funds are meant to provide access to substance use disorder treatments, peer services, and social services, with a focus on ethnic communities disproportionately impacted by substance abuse and who face barriers getting help.

"The extra support is going to give a better opportunity for clients to access more services around the community," Sandoval says.

The organization wants to expand and provide peer mentoring.

"A peer mentor is anyone who has overcome an addiction and in recovery - a certified recovery mentor - or someone that has overcome any mental health problems or issues and can use their experience to help," explains Lisbet Rivas, a Certified Addictions Drug Counselor at Centro.

Centro Latino Americano's alcohol and drug program works with an individual on a treatment plan, connects them to self help meetings, medical services and more.

"My self esteem was low," Moore says. "They helped me build that up."

They offer youth and adult services.

"The end goal is to create a recovery community where individuals can benefit form services, but also they themselves can become part of that collective, community healing," says Lisbet.

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Moore says he's interested in becoming a certified recovery mentor: "I want to be able to help others who went through what I did and give them my experience."

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