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From Guest to Peer Supporter: Victoria's Journey of Transformation at Hacienda of Hope

From Guest to Peer Supporter: Victoria's Journey of Transformation at Hacienda of Hope | Project Return Peer Support Network

Victoria's Journey at Hacienda of Hope

Victoria had found herself at a crossroads. Struggling in an unhealthy environment with a partner who triggered her PTSD, she recognized the pressing need to escape. She had previously endured hospitalization and was desperate to find an alternative solution. She mustered the courage to take a leap of faith, driven by an overwhelming desire for change, and sought support in the peer respite of Hacienda of Hope.

"All I knew was I needed something, I needed to get away," Victoria shared. "That's what helped me overcome my initial bias. When I arrived here, I realized it was a sanctuary. And it has remained one ever since."

Upon her arrival at Hacienda of Hope, Victoria began to uncover her purpose. After a few stays at the respite, she was ready to embark on the next phase of her recovery journey.

Developing a deep passion for peer support, she connected with PRPSN's training team and diligently worked toward becoming a Certified Medi-Cal Peer Support Specialist. Remarkably, she now serves as a peer supporter, employed at the very house where she was once a guest.

Reflecting on her time as a guest, Victoria fondly recalls one particular group that left a lasting impression on her: Walking and Meditation. Especially during the isolation brought on by the pandemic, this group provided a much-needed respite and an opportunity to engage with peers in the great outdoors. Today, Victoria proudly facilitates this group, perpetuating the invaluable support she once received.

With newfound hope, Victoria envisions a brighter future. She aspires to pursue a formal education in social work, driven by her own transformative journey of recovery. Her unwavering commitment to peer support fuels her desire to extend the same level of care to others.

"Without the guests, this house would merely be an empty house," Victoria emphasizes. "That’s part of the mutuality that is the backbone of Hacienda of Hope."

Through her personal growth and unwavering dedication, Victoria Ramirez serves as a shining example of the life-changing power of peer support. Her resilient spirit and determination inspire hope for countless individuals seeking their own paths to recovery.

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Michaella Huck


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