On Monday 11 March teams from Western Counselling and Lighthouse at Weston loaded a van to travel to Westminster to showcase our work sustaining recovery in Weston super Mare and more exactly the Lighthouse Café.
Invited by the Recovery Partnership of which Western Counselling is a member, the café was transported lock, stock and very heavy coffee machine to a “pop up” location in the QEII Conference Centre. Cakes and cookies abounded and a large quantity of our famous carrot cake was consumed. Lee, Ian and Ed worked their socks off and all with humour, they were Recovery Ambassadors for the Festival, signposting delegates to the Brink, Langans Tea Rooms and of course Lighthouse Café – all in addition to serving copious quantities of coffee and tea, clearing tables and talking about their experiences.
To be able to take them to the House of Commons on Tuesday 12th March was amazing. Celebrating their Recovery on the Terrace overlooking the Thames in the heart of our Government buildings was a humbling and enriching moment and seeing others also present who’d been through Western Counselling, brought a tear to my eye.
These guys worked 14-16 hour days over the period, still laughing as they returned to Weston late on Wednesday night. I challenge anyone who can question their commitment or motivation to employment and thinks they aren’t worth employing. Believe me, they’ve more than demonstrated their ability to work hard. They’ve proved their abilities, they’ve demonstrated their loyalty, flexibility and determination now lets cease this eternal stigma and discrimination against addiction and recovery and give them a job.