Nov. 23, 2021 – More than four years later, Compton, 33, is sober, has a job with Volunteers of America Mid-States, the non-profit agency that helped her, and is studying for a social work degree at Spalding University.  She recently bought a house and, most importantly, kept custody of her son, Wyatt, 4, born a week after she entered the treatment program.

“I learned how to be a mom,” said Compton, of her time at VOA’s Freedom House for pregnant women with addiction. “I learned how to stand on my own two feet and be a strong, independent woman.”  Senate President Robert Stivers, a Republican from Clay County, said the project comes amid rising substance abuse throughout Kentucky that all parties must work to combat.

“This is not a Republican or Democratic issue,” Stivers said.

Rep. David Meade, a House Republican leader whose district includes Lincoln County, described the VOA program this way:

“Its message is simple,” he said. “Help Kentuckians heal and help Kentucky families stay together.” With alcohol or drug use a factor in a majority of Kentucky’s child welfare cases, it’s important try to find new ways to avoid placing children in foster care, said Jennifer Hancock, CEO of VOA-Midstates, which covers Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia and Indiana.

“Nobody seeks family separation,” Hancock said. “It is traumatic, it is heartbreaking and it is expensive.”


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