Teresa used drugs for 40 years before coming to TROSA. Because of her addiction, she was unable to hold a steady job and began stealing to support her drug use.

“I spiraled out of control,” said Teresa. “I moved a lot, but I began to realize that every time I moved, I brought myself with me.”

Teresa spent time in and out of prison, and during her last sentence, she heard about TROSA. Teresa was tired of the way she was living and was ready to make a change.

When Teresa came to TROSA in March 2015, her addiction had affected her health so badly that she had no teeth.

“When my addiction got really heavy, I stopped going to the dentist and stopped taking care of my teeth. That was when they really started deteriorating,” said Teresa. “I kept my mouth closed all the time and looked down when I was talking to people because I was ashamed of my teeth.”

While at TROSA, Teresa was able to access dental treatment. Thanks to generous donors, grants, and a dedicated team of community medical partners, TROSA can provide specialized health services such as dental care in addition to the comprehensive free services for residents. Teresa’s dental work included full upper and partial lower dentures.

“My confidence shot through the roof after getting a full set of teeth,” said Teresa. “I am now able to smile and look at people when I speak to them. TROSA is responsible for the smile and the confidence that I have today.”

Teresa graduated from TROSA’s program in May 2017. She stayed on as “post-graduate” to continue helping others in their recovery, vocationally training in Continuing Care.

Today, she is a staff member at TROSA.

As Teresa reflects on her time in the program, she has much to share about her journey.

“TROSA has given me the tools and the structure I needed to rebuild my life,” said Teresa. “I am a completely different person than I was before. I’ve learned to love myself again, and I got my smile back. TROSA gave me a second chance at life, and I am so grateful.”