680 Park Ave W, Mansfield OH 419-528-5993
6434 E Main St, #201, Reynoldsburg OH 614-762-2847

Senator Rob Portman Visits Healing Hearts

Mansfield, OH – Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) was in Mansfield Tuesday for a special visit at Healing Hearts Counseling Center at Parkside.  Sen. Portman toured the counseling center and met with a round table of guests including: Joe Trolian, Executive Director of the Richland County Mental Health Board; Maja and DeWayne Lee, the owners of Healing Hearts; and several clients.

The round table discussion thanked Sen. Portman for his work and explored questions about what motivated the clients to stay in recovery? What was different for them this time? What currently helps them maintain sobriety? And, as each individual shared, it was a combination of having access to treatment when they were ready, along with education, treatment, accountability, groups and outside support.

Healing Hearts clients in attendance were: Ali Hardin, Arlana Strickland, Andrew C., Beau Ricer, Jon Bigelow and Renee Clark. Clients shared their stories of addiction recovery from alcohol or drug abuse, what motivated them to stay in sobriety and how the programs at Healing Hearts has impacted their lives.

Twenty-six-year-old Beau Ricer started getting into trouble at the age of 12. Ricer used all types of drugs and at the age of 21 he started using heroin. “A year after I started using heroin I went to a boot camp in Chicago and I was able to stay clean for about a month after I was released,” Ricer said. In April 2017, Ricer’s life changed after his probation officer directed him to Healing Hearts Counseling Center. “When I arrived at Healing Hearts, I was greeted at the door by the owner, DeWayne Lee, who made me feel more comfortable by sharing his own story. The programs at the center have helped me to maintain my sobriety,” Ricer said. Ricer has been clean since his arrival at Healing Hearts. He is employed and started a new family.

Fifty-six-year-old, Andrew C., started using marijuana, cocaine, pills, acid and alcohol after joining the Marine Corps at the age of 17.  Cooper was active for four years and served six years total in the Marines. When he returned home he realized his addiction was taking over his life. “I had a difficult time holding down a job. My addiction took me all over the United States and at some points I was homeless. My addiction also caused me to lose relationships with family members,” Andrew said. His addiction caused him to spend time at the penitentiary in Nebraska. He came to Ohio 12 years ago and he prayed for someone to come into his life to help him overcome his addiction. In June 2017, he met a couple in downtown Mansfield who were clients at Healing Hearts and he went to the center that day. At the behest of his Healing Hearts counselor, he contacted his children and now has relationship with all of them including sole custody of his youngest son. “God and Healing Hearts did not give me my old life back, but gave me a new life,” Andrew said.

Prescribed narcotics at the age of 13 was how Ali Hardin’s addiction began. “I tried getting help so many times and every time I failed. Then went right back to my addiction and my addiction got even worse. Addiction doesn’t discriminate, it doesn’t care who you are, where you come from or what you do or have ever done. I am now clean and sober. I have a beautiful and wonderful life, with my beautiful, amazing daughter, and for the first time, maybe if ever, I know my worth. I’ve changed; and my journey has begun again.” Hardin said.

Renee Clark’s sober date is April 2, 2017.  Renee expressed that all the counselors and staff at Healing Hearts have been instrumental in facilitating her sobriety.  She has been off all medication for a couple months, and is ecstatic to announce that she will be giving birth to a drug-free baby in three months.

“I am now volunteering with Children’s Services to help other people who have lost their kids and are working to get them back.” shared Arlana Strickland. Ms. Strickland had lost and regained custody of her children and has turned a corner and is helping other parents stay focused on their recovery and parenting their kids. “Healing Hearts is a family to me and it meant a lot that I was doing well, that they trusted me. I wanted to not disappoint my family.”

“We are proud of each of you” said DeWayne Lee to the round table of clients while Sen. Portman, DeWayne and Maja Lee, and Joe Trolian clapped their encouragement. “Speaking of family – let’s get a family portrait.” Maja Anderson said. See family portrait below.

Healing Hearts Counseling Center at Parkside offers professional outpatient individual and group counseling for such issues as addiction/co-dependency, alcohol/drugs, depression, grief, trauma/PTSD, sexual abuse, sexual addiction, couples/relationship counseling, anger management, stress management, and more. Processing groups using Art, Drumming and Yoga are available. Groups starting after the new year are as follows: #Metoo; women’s groups, 12 step groups, and a couples group.

The facility provides opioid treatment in the Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) Program.

Healing Hearts Counseling Center at Parkside office hours are 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, with scheduled evening and weekend hours. To schedule an appointment call 419-528-5993.

If you would like more information, please contact Maja-lisa Anderson Lee, BA, MA, LPCC at 419-528-5993 or email at Maja.healinghearts@gmail.com.

See the related article and video here on WMFD