Something positive in my life

My name is Paul and I am a resident of Buell Street Dismas House. I was in jail for a year before I heard about Dismas. I was told that if you are serious about getting out and staying out of jail, Dismas was a solid and positive place to begin.

I was nervous and anxious about living with nine strangers. The first day I was surprised to find a happy group of people who had just returned from a three day camping trip in Groton Forest. After two years in jail, here I was living with people who take trips together, all joking and laughing about getting out of the camp grounds just ahead of hurricane Irene.

Everyone was helpful with information to help me get started with my new freedom, and I was kindly told to take it slow and find my stride. Over time, I have gotten more involved with life at Dismas. I cook regularly now for the residents on the weekends, and really enjoy it.

I’ve made some real bonds of friendship here, and I have found myself caring about “our house”, and taking care of it when I can help. I was asked to join the Dismas Board of Directors as a Resident Board Member. Helping with decision making, and the ability to bring a different view to the board is important to me.

As a community, we are supportive of each other and our goal to maintain a sober lifestyle. Dismas House has become a source of strength and support for me. Dismas has given me a new look at my life, and how working with others for the common good of the group, is a positive way to help yourself and the rest of the house continue to overcome the challenges of everyday life after prison.