Step 1: Organization helping men turn their lives around

Reported by: Samantha Boatman
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Updated: 5/14/2014 11:48 am

RENO, Nev. ( & KRNV) -- A local organization is helping men with alcohol or drug addictions turn their lives around, one day at a time.

"I came in hopeless," said Ronald Poe. Ronald first came to the Step 1 home on North Sierra Street in 2010. He says he has struggled with an addiction since he was 9-years-old. He came to the Step 1 home when he was 48.

"I didn't even know I could get help, but what they have taught me is how to maintain my addiction and control it," Poe said.

The volunteers at Step 1 stepped in and gave Ronald the chance to change his life. It was an opportunity he never thought he'd have.

"If I wasn't desperate enough to change it, I don't think id be here if I wasn't willing to understand what they were teaching me and wanting it, I wouldn't be here," Poe said.

20 men can live in the Step 1 home. There's two beds to a room and counselors on hand to help the men get through the with drawls and overcome their addiction. Men can live at the home for 90 days, 6 months, even up to a year.

"If you have just a little bit of hope, or even if you don't have that hope you can come here and find out that people will let you grow with a little bit of that hope," Poe said.

Dani Doehring the executive director of Step 1 has been with the organization for 10 years.

"It's really phenominal, the thousands of men who have come through here, seeing them so broken when they arrive with no hope, not even sure if they can stay clean and sober. Then, after 90 days here or in six months in some cases, they have turned their life around, they're working in the community, and they have relationships with their families again," Doehring said.

She has seen the men at their lowest of lows transform their lives and then walk away clean, sober, and an inspiration to others.

"There is such a social stigma on addiction in the first place so when they arrive here, they're already feeling less than human and once they arrive here, they're cared for not only by the staff, but the other participants of the program," Doehring said.

Ronald is a success story of Step 1, he now works at the home and is a mentor to the other men facing the same challenges he did.  He now has a relationship with his family, something he hadn't had in 14 years.

"We've all had our addiction and we've all fought our battles, and it's a great place," Poe said.

If you'd like more information about Step 1, you can visit or call (775) 329-9830

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