Bridgitte Yasmin Cleveland. She grew up and went to school in Brooklyn, N.Y. the only child of Trinidadian parents. Home was like a roller coaster with a loving mom who worked full time while going to school and a dad who was extremely physically abusive. Being bullied by the other girls at school, the neighborhood she lived in and physically beaten at home, she lived in fear. She could not understand why the other girls hated her so much. She didn’t feel like she belonged anywhere and needed an escape from all the hurt and pain. That’s when she found 4 best friends, marijuana, liquor & cigarettes and bulimia. She dropped out of school in the10th grade because of a traumatic experience by a man she was introduced to. At the age of 26, she moved to Bergen County N.J. to get away, taking all of her diseased thinking with her. By this point she was the mom of a baby girl and a full blown addict whose drug of choice was alcohol. Drinking alcohol & doing drugs for approximatley 30 years became a way of life that caused unmanageability and chaos physically and mentally. Being sick and tired of being sick and tired, she decided it was time for a change. She reached out for help and was admitted into detox at a hospital known today as New Bridge Medical Center, where she successfully completed detox. Just for today she is a first time winner with no relapses from any of her addictions ( drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, bulimia). She continues to share her experience, strength and hope by volunteering to speak at treatment facilities like Integrity House Turning Point, the Ladder Project for men, Eva’s Village and particularly the the F1 and C2 units at the Hospital she detoxed in, New Bridge Medical Center formerly known as Bergen Regional Hospital. She shows her gratitude by counseling men and women being released from prison and ordered into an Intensive Out patient and Out Patient program for Substance Use disorder Today Bridgitte Yasmin Cleveland has completely turned her life around one day at a time. She realized her journey led her to her purpose on purpose. to use the “hurt she received from hurt women to help women who hurt”. Currently she is the CEO and Founder of a 501c3 Organization called ROAR. Reach Out Addiction & Recovery House Inc. which is a sober living house for women suffering from the disease of alcohol & drug addiction. She is also certified in Mental Health & First aide training and a Notary Public. This is her story and why ROAR was created.
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