Ron's Story

RonI left home when I was 17; I had been abused by my stepfather and had been using drugs for about 4 years. I ended up in Hollywood about a year later with no money and no place to live in 1977. I met many people involved with drugs and began using them myself. I spent the years between 1985 and 1999 going in and out of prison, being homeless and addicted to drugs. In 2007 I decided to change my life and entered a long term residential treatment center. I took the time to work on myself and for the first time in my life was willing to try to live another way. It has been 6 years since I completed treatment. I have been employed since February 13, 2008 by the Center for Living and Learning. I was terrified when it came time to look for a job and thought no one would hire me with my record. Center for Living and Learning gave me a chance. They saw something I didn’t see in myself. After I completed my paid apprenticeship, I was hired on as a job search mentor because of my willingness to learn and take on new tasks that were handed to me. I have become a very dependable and reliable employee. I have been entrusted to purchase supplies, IT equipment, such as computers and printers. I also maintain our computer networks; repair and maintain all of the Center’s computers; teach computer skills to our apprentices and assist with administrative duties. One of the best things that has happened to me since I began working here at the Center is that I have found that I can learn things very quickly, I was a 9th grade dropout and I always believed that I was not smart, however that is not the case. Today at the Center for Living and Learning, it is my privilege to work with clients like myself, and give them hope that they can succeed as well. Since beginning work at the Center for Living and Learning I have completed the Human Services Associates of Arts Degree program with a Drug and Alcohol Counseling Certificate at Los Angeles City College (LACC). I graduated with honors in June of 2013 with a GPA of 3.79. Today I am very proud to be a man of integrity with a great work ethic!

From Maria Alexander Center for Living and Learning: Ron has been a tremendous asset to our organization for over 6 years and recently received an award from Congressman Cardenas for his work in the community. He continues to grow in his career and continues to further his education. Ron has demonstrated our core values of integrity, honesty and responsibility in his work performance both with other employees and the customers we serve. He is a very valuable member of our team!