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“I don’t always have an answer, but I do have an ear to listen.”

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"I started using heroin when I was 15. No one knows what it's like to need to put $50 in your body before you can brush your teeth – no one knows what it's like unless you've been through it. It's like waking up with the flu-times-one-thousand. Every night I'm not going to sleep, I'm laying down and resting my eyes for 3 hours, getting right back up at 4'o'clock in the morning. I'm getting picked up from a small town in Carroll County, Maryland, by older white men that would otherwise not talk to me at all, so we can go down and I can get them their fix, their money can get me mine, and I can get dropped back off to get on a school bus and go to school and perform, pass tests, give speeches, and act like nothing was wrong. One teacher my senior year spoke to me. She said 'You know, Eric, I know you've had some problems, and if there's something I could do to stop you, I would… Only you have the answer. Please let me know what I can do to help.' I looked her dead in her face and said 'There is nothing wrong with me.' What can you tell a teenager – especially a teenager who feels like he or she is in charge? When you're not done, you're not done. And I was out to do harm to myself. I couldn't do enough drugs. …I didn't have enough to live for to worry about dying. I believe that's what's different about this time around. I'm never gonna say 'I've got this, I'm okay,' but I'm definitely alright. I now work for a prominent local hospital, linking people with the help and the hope that they need to possibly seek treatment. I don't always have an answer, but I do have an ear to listen." —– Eric, 11 months #clean and #sober, shares some of his story on @drugstoriesproject – listen at the link in our bio!

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Listen at https://www.drugstories.org/stories/eric-whitaker

“I was getting high for 52 years” – Blue’s recovery story

“I am a firm believer that the small things in life make the difference. The big [things] are going to happen to everyone. The little ones are gifts. When someone talks to you and they actually care, it’s something you remember. It can make a huge difference in the rest of your day. It might make a difference in the rest of your life. Care might be the difference between life and death.” Read more at helpingupmission.org/stories/blue

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“Today I understand what life is really all about”

Maryland law firms help expunge criminal records for Giving Tuesday

WMAR Staff BALTIMORE (WMAR) – Law firms in Maryland teamed up for Giving Tuesday to help people expunge their criminal records. Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service and Venable, a Baltimore law firm, set out to help 40 clients expunge 250 criminal record convictions so they can have easier access to jobs, houses, and time with their children. Both firms worked with the Helping Up Mission, which aims to help people who are overcoming poverty, homelessness, and addiction. To Read More CLICK HERE

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Choir from St. John in Westminster heads to Carnegie Hall

Check out this great article about Helping Up Staff member and CFO Michael Burns: By Emily Rosenthal of the Catholic Review   WESTMINSTER – Fifteen choirs will participate in the world premiere of “Rhapsody in Bluegrass” at Carnegie Hall in New York City Nov. 27. Only one has a Catholic connection: the adult choir from St. John Parish in Westminster. “We’re a little parish choir in Westminster, invited to perform at Carnegie Hall,” said Regina McCurdy, director of liturgical music …

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Maryland nonprofits join ‘Giving Tuesday’ movement, solicit donations, volunteerism

Yvonne Wenger Contact Reporter The Baltimore Sun A coalition of young people is searching for 614,000 pledges of time, money or acts of kindness as part of a local #GivingTuesday campaign to secure one charitable action in honor of every Baltimore resident. The global fundraising movement has raised tens of millions of dollars locally and generated creative outpourings in Maryland since it was established in 2012, such as a dance crew posting step-by-step video tutorials on social media to raise money …

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Dustin’s recovery story

“I was using drugs for so long that I didn’t know how to live without them.”

Dustin's recovery story

Read more at helpingupmission.org/stories/dustini

Baltimore Shelters Take on Veteran Homelessness

Baltimore Shelters Take on Veteran Homelessness

Brendan McNamara 8:51 PM, Nov 8, 2017 BALTIMORE, Md. (WMAR) – Homelessness is a problem that still impacts tens of thousands of veterans across the country. In Baltimore, traditional shelters are teaming with veteran organizations dedicated to helping those who have served. One of those shelters is the Helping Up Mission. “It gave me hope at a time when I was really hopeless,” says Kris Sharrar, a former airman and current Helping Up Director of Philanthropy. Sharrar says the transition …

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