For fifteen years Bella used drugs: marijuana, alcohol, crack cocaine and particularly PCP. Between stays in prison, Bella cared for her young daughter, but after a traumatizing miscarriage, followed by a day-long PCP binge, Bella decided she needed help. The next day, August 10, Bella entered Interim House and has been clean and sober ever since.

 Thirty-year-old Bella recalls, "I had a lot of anxiety. I was scared; I didn't know where my life was going. I lost a child; I had a little girl. When I came to Interim House, I was comforted and loved. They gave me everything I needed. My therapist walked me through my whole time at Interim House." Bella made the most of what Interim House has to offer. She received help with finding transitional housing, relapse prevention support, and took classes to build her self-awareness. She continues to use coping skills that she learned through Interim House's Therapeutic knitting group.

Bella describes how Interim House's Job Readiness Program helped her begin a career in spite of her worries that her criminal background would prevent her from getting a job:

"When I started outpatient and lived in transitional housing, the vocational coordinator for the Job Readiness Program, told us about a free cooking school that had classes starting soon. The day it was offered to us, I grabbed it. I took full advantage of what was given to me and I graduated. I went to school five days a week from 7:30 to 3:30; I would get up at 5:30 a.m. to be there on time. We were only allowed five days absence; if you missed more than that, you wouldn't get your certification. I succeeded and graduated in October of 2010. I got my first internship, but wasn't hired and felt I wasn't getting a job quick enough. I was very discouraged, thinking my criminal record would always hold me back. Interim House was always there encouraging me to keep trying. I got a second internship and I busted my butt to work hard. During my second internship, I was offered my present job in January. I am now a cook at a childcare learning center for three-to-five year-olds, which prepares them for first grade. I love it. The children are great. I am in a small facility and I cook everyday and they enjoy the food.

Interim House has been there every step of the way. I still come for individual therapy every week and see my therapist. I had some stumbling blocks because of my criminal background, but my child-abuse clearance was clear; I could work with children. Everything worked out for me. I have a career"

Bella started working 20 hours per week, but was recently promoted to full time benefits. She says, "I am a mom who is supporting my daughter and my daughter wants to be a cook like me!"