Monique Stanton, CARE President & CEO
The holidays can be a time of joy and much sorrow for individuals in the community. As a child with a parent that was actively using heroin for most of my middle and high school years, the holidays were a time of joy intermixed with sorrow and fear. While I loved the bustle of the holidays full of baking, decorating, and general fun there was always a space missing for where my mother should have been. There was always a fear that she wouldn’t make it through another cold winter. Gifts for her were warm gloves, coats and hats in attempt to keep her safe from the brutal Michigan winters. Thankfully after a long winter of addiction, my mother has established a very strong recovery and we are able to have a positive and healthy relationship.
My experience being raised in a multi-generational family and with an individual that was actively using heroin continues to fuel my passion for the work at CARE. I have experienced what it is like to be a child in a home where the love, care and attention of a parent is absent. Children need to know they are loved. They need direction. They need someone who smiles when they come into a room; someone who helps them with their homework and lovingly tucks them in at night. They need a parent who is interested in their achievements and who listens to their problems. Every child should feel valued and have the support of loved ones.