Step Denver: Transforming Lives and Building Community through Recovery

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In a society where the mantra of self-sufficiency often rings loudest, there's an undeniable truth: we are stronger together. Nowhere is this sentiment more palpable than within the walls of Step Denver, a beacon of hope and healing for men battling addiction in Colorado.

Recently, Step Denver received a significant boost in its mission, thanks to an investment of over $3.2 million from the Caring for Denver Foundation. This injection of funds underscores a pivotal shift in alcohol-related treatment, prioritizing community support and holistic healing over isolation and stigma.

Lorez Meinhold, Executive Director of the Caring for Denver Foundation, encapsulates the essence of this transformative approach: "We live in a society that says, 'Pull yourself up by your bootstraps.' This idea that we need to connect with other people and heal together... How do we heal and address the trauma so we don't have to use those substances to subside what we may be feeling. It's easier to enter recovery when you know you're not in it alone."

Step Denver exemplifies this ethos, offering a lifeline to men who find themselves without resources or refuge. Through its residential program, individuals like Angelo Lucero and Derrik Bunyon discover the strength to confront their demons and embark on the path to recovery.

For Lucero, the simple act of cooking alongside fellow residents symbolizes newfound freedom after years ensnared by addiction. "Before I came into the program, I was basically drinking every day, really on my way to a death bed," he shares candidly. Bunyon echoes a similar sentiment, reflecting on a childhood marred by substance abuse and a pivotal moment of clarity that led him to Step Denver.

Their journeys are testaments to resilience and the transformative power of community. From the depths of addiction to the heights of sobriety, Lucero and Bunyon have emerged as pillars of support for others navigating similar struggles. "A big motivation for me was I had a 5-year-old son. I wanted to be a present father for him. This program not only taught me to be a father but to live a normal life again," Lucero reflects.

Today, as support managers within Step Denver, Lucero and Bunyon pay forward the gift of recovery they received. Their stories inspire hope and serve as a beacon for those still grappling with addiction.

As Bunyon aptly summarizes, "I know for a fact my life depends on my recovery. This has been life changing... To get to play a small part in someone's recovery, it's beyond my wildest dreams."

Step Denver's commitment to fostering lasting change extends beyond its walls. With open arms and unwavering dedication, it invites individuals to embark on a journey of healing, resilience, and community. For those seeking solace and support, Step Denver stands as a testament to the transformative power of recovery.

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