Romelow's Story

I first was connected to Continuum of Care at age 19 while I was incarcerated. I had just been diagnosed with a serious mental illness. I was court stipulated to a program and Continuum of Care’s Crisis and Respite program accepted me. I was not ready for treatment at that point in time, so I was consistently in and out of institutions, jails and the Crisis and Respite program. This cycle lasted until I was age 25. 

Back then, I was the type of person who didn’t care about rules and regulations or my own well-being while I was under the influence. I would constantly break rules and use drugs and alcohol while I was in the Crisis and Respite program. Due to my decisions and actions, I was asked to leave the Crisis and Respite program for good because I put residents and staff in danger.

After I left Crisis and Respite, I was homeless for a couple months before I committed a crime and went to jail. I did four months in jail, and then I was sent to a mental institution. While I was there I started to think about my future and the way my life was going. I realized that that environment was not somewhere I wanted to be for the rest of my life. 

When I was released, I started going to Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous meetings, and that’s when my life changed. I started my sober living journey on March 22, 2011. Later, I was placed with Continuum’s Brownell Street Program and was told that completing the program would give me the opportunity to receive a housing voucher and employment.

My case manager at Brownell referred me to Continuum’s South Central Peer Services and I was accepted into their internship program. After I finished the internship, I was hired for employment as a Recovery Support Specialist. I started out working one-on-one with a client and I found that I was able to give him what Continuum gave me, a helping hand. 

I now work 40 hours and was able to give Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits after one year of steady employment. I also recently completed Recovery University and passed the Certification testing. Today, I celebrate five years of sobriety but I treat each day like it’s my first day. I regularly attend meetings and even went to the Alcoholics Anonymous Conference this past year. 

Now, I work hand-in-hand with others being released from incarceration into transitional programs similar to the Brownell Street Program. I am giving back what Continuum so freely gave me all these years. They never gave up on me.    
 

Won’t you consider helping us to help someone -- who pays it forward -- like Romelow?

 

 

How Your Donation Can Help Someone Like Romelow:

  • $500 Can pay the security deposit for someone transitioning out of homelessness into an apartment
  • $250 Can purchase furniture for a new apartment
  • $200 Purchases a “New Home Basket” with kitchen, bathroom, and cleaning essentials
  • $150 Can buy basic items not covered by medical insurance, like eyeglasses and dentures
  • $100 Helps pay heat, electric, and water bills
  • $50 Can provide necessities like clothes, underwear, socks, and duffle bags
  • $40 Helps pay for a month’s worth of daily bus passes for travel to appointments or a job
  • $25 Can pay for groceries
  • Other All donations directly benefit those who are in our care or are transitioning out to their own apartment

Other Ways You Can Help:

  • $5,000  You can “Adopt a Group Home” operated by Continuum. (Continuum operates 44 group homes in Connecticut, helping individuals to stabilize and live in the community. Just like any home, upkeep and maintenance are ongoing demands.)
  • $2,000  You can help improve the critical health conditions faced by those with serious mental illness by supporting Continuum's Health and Wellness Department.

Continuum of Care, Inc.’s mission is to enable people who are challenged with mental illness, intellectual disability or other disability, and/or addiction, to rebuild a meaningful life and thrive in the community.