Sarah Vaile – Founder and Chief Executive of Recovery Cymru
I love being a part of Recovery Cymru. Seeing people change their lives and use their experiences to help others is inspiring. Everyone has strengths and talents. Unfortunately, these are often hidden or forgotten, but as a community we help each other to find and express them for the benefit of all! I am passionate about people and strongly believe in the power of shared experience and understanding. I am fascinated by social movements and community, and am committed to groups in society who are so often stigmatized and marginalized, namely, those with drug and alcohol problems, mental health problems and offending histories. I see recovery as a reality and it’s a privilege to work with people who share their lives and stories with others. My belief in empowering people to ‘own and solve their own problems’ has married with my faith in social movements, storytelling and community to lead me to develop Recovery Cymru
Tim Norval – F2R Engagement & Outreach Worker
Tim has been involved with RC since 2011, coming on board as a volunteer in July 2012. He co-facilitated the Tuesday evening Support Group and other volunteer roles such as the Wednesday cookery social evenings. I became a full time member of staff within RC in June 2013.”As Volunteer Coordinator, I worked with our members and volunteers offering training, information and occasionally, guidance to roles that they may wish to become engaged in. In my new role; ‘F2R Outreach and Engagement worker’, I go to external organisations and explain the F2R programme and it’s benefits to People in Recovery from problematic Substance misuse. As well as my everyday role of supporting members, volunteers and my colleagues when appropriate. I believe in the vision, values and overall philosophy of Recovery Cymru and try to adhere to it in my own personal lifestyle.”
Andrew Sims – Cardiff Throughcare & Aftercare Worker
Hi I’m Andrew, I am the Recovery Community and Aftercare worker. I help to deliver the Footsteps to Recovery programme with our friends and colleagues at Solas Cymru and Newlink Wales. I run groups and offer 1-2-1 support to people who are going through structured aftercare. I joined RC in 2012 after a detox at Whitchurch hospital and with the encouragement of my peers and friends in recovery soon started volunteering and then started working part time at RC. Since I joined RC my life has changed a million times for the better and this year (2017) I celebrate 5 years sober! My relationships with my family have improved 100% and since embarking on this journey I’ve sorted my debts out, got a dog, moved, got married and learned to sail! It’s so far from where I was and its why it’s such a privilege to give my all to help others in recovery to be the best they can be!
Rachel Bayer – Finance, HR & Operational Coordinator
I first got involved with RC in 2011. I had been struggling with my confidence and self-esteem after a bout of depression and needed to get out and involved with something. Having personal experience with the effects alcohol and substances can have on people’s lives; I found the concept of something which was peer led and using shared experience as something inspiring. As I started volunteering and becoming more involved with the community, I saw the impact that this had on individuals lives and found it encouraging about how empowering it could be. Although not in recovery from a substance, I started using the skills and tools to help me in my recovery from depression and it has helped me be where I am today. I have been employed with RC for 3 and a half years now and it still gives me a sense of purpose entering the centre each day and seeing people grow in their recovery!!
Jude Enticott – Volunteer Coordinator
Susie Boxall – Community Coordinator
I became a member of Recovery Cymru in 2010. I felt, for the first time, that I wasn’t being judged for the ways I had misused alcohol but people listened and supported me. I became a volunteer and I am now a member of staff at Recovery Cyrmu. I believe passionately in supporting RC, the peer support approach works, gives hope and breaks down stigma. I have met so many people in this community who have inspired me and helped me in my recovery. Susie also supports the Volunteer Programme across both centres and has been developing the programme over recent months.
Chris Roberts-Clarke – Peer Worker
I ask myself. “Which came first? Depression or drinking?” Only now can I begin to answer those questions. I have been sober since 2015 and had time to reflect on where I have been and how I come to be here now. Through almost 30 years of employment, I was ruled by my anxiety; self-doubt, fear and low self-esteem. Just over two years ago I was unemployed, a failure, worthless responsible for having to sell our home to bail the family out, but enquiries led me to Recovery Cymru. The staff, volunteers and members supported me to stay sober. I began to learn how to deal with problems and think more constructively. I engaged in CBT to deal with the anxiety and depression. I became well enough to volunteer at Recovery Cymru; facilitate groups, attend training courses and ultimately I have secured paid employment as a Peer Support Worker. And now? To quote my favourite poem, “…yesterday is but a dream, and tomorrow is only a vision; And today well-lived, makes yesterday a dream of happiness and every tomorrow a vision of hope. Look well therefore to this day;”
Claire Norval- Domestic Goddess
I have been working at Recovery Cymru since 2014. When I’m not tidying up after people I volunteer as a Recovery Buddy, I meet and introduce new members, sessional work and even spend a few hours here and there on reception! Recovery Cymru is a 2nd family to me where I feel safe. I used to volunteer with another substance misuse charity and I came to RC to volunteer after I met my now-husband Tim the Volunteer Coordinator. Recovery Cymru has given me stability in my life-after-substance misuse, a focus and perhaps most notably, a husband! THANKS RC! 🙂
Anthony P – Domestic God
For 10-15 years I had alcohol, substance misuse and mental health issues. I had been referred to E-DAS who referred me to RC, where I received texts for a number of months before I actually decided to walk through the doors in the Barry Recovery Centre.
I started attending groups for about a year; going on trips and getting involved with activities provided by RC where I met some great inspirational and helpful people. I then felt I wanted to get more involved within the RC Community and received volunteering training through Recovery Cymru and through the MILE programme. I have helped man the centre and reception for almost two years now. It’s given me a purpose and structure to my life that I desperately needed. Then an opportunity came to me in November 2015 to become an employee to keep the centre clean and organised for the staff and members and I have been here since……………………….RC you are Top of the Pops!!!
Andrew Mccutchion- Vale Throughcare & Aftercare Worker
I’m Andrew and have been volunteering with Recovery Cymru since 2017. I had been very involved in recovery and especially using music as a therapeutic tool and way of creating community for those who had become excluded. With this and my own lived experience in mind I was looking for something to become part of after arriving in Wales. I found something very special and unique not only to the Vale but anywhere I had previously been. The peer led environment was
incredibly welcoming, reassuring and supportive. Over time I began facilitating groups,
Buddying and any other task with which I could help. I was determined that I would remain
connected moving forward. A role became available In February 2019 and was lucky enough
to be successful in my application and subsequent interview.
Oh and I still make music whenever the opportunity arises!
Maram Al – Khalaileh – Sessional Peer Worker
Hi my name is Maram, and I have been volunteering with Recovery Cymru since July 2017 and became a sessional member of staff in February 2018. I still volunteer on reception and facilitating groups, and as a staff member I help out with admin and other various tasks. Recovery Cymru has been very influential in helping me to achieve long term recovery and get my life back on track. Therefore it is great to be able to work for a cause that I believe in and that I know does so much good for so many people. Working and volunteering has helped me to gain confidence in myself and learn valuable skills to put on my CV. In my spare time I like to have adventures with my 6 year old son Marshall, play my guitar, read and binge-watch boxsets.