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Local program radically changing lives

Local program radically changing lives (WKRC)
Local program radically changing lives (WKRC)
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CINCINNATI (WKRC) - A horrible accident left her blind, but a local program radically changed her life.

Gina Gibson says she started experimenting with drugs and alcohol in high school.

Even after a horrible accident involving drugs stole her eyesight, she couldn't quit.

"I was just kind of young and having fun until it was too late, and I didn't even realize it yet," said Gibson.

A meth lab that exploded in her face had burned off the surface of her eyes.

"Total ocular surface failure, they called it," she said.

Even afterwards, Gibson says the addiction was strong.

"I was so far into it that I couldn't manage it on my own, and I couldn't stop it on my own," she said.

All that changed, however, the day she finally said 'yes' to a reset.

"One of the main things we offer is dignified housing, because they've been living in a place that is not dignified," said Erich Switzer, the executive director of Reset Ministries.

Reset Ministries is a faith-based program that has just opened its third home in Newport, Kentucky. This one is for women only.

Switzer says it costs nothing for a person to move in, and the organization accepts no government money.

"Most of our folks come to us from a recovery situation, either from down the street at the jail, or a long-term treatment facility," he said.

What makes Reset unique is that it is what's called a "next step program."

Each client gets their own volunteer, but highly-trained, coach.

"The mission of Reset Ministries is to reclaim lives," said Becky Rennert, a life coach at Reset. "From broken lives, to purposeful and meaningful."

Clients can stay there for as long as it takes to recover.

"We help them get employment within a couple of weeks and learn the life skills that they need, so that once they graduate Reset, they'll be able to go and live on their own," Switzer said.

Along with the coaching, Reset gradually introduces daily structure, mental health support, faith-based meetings, which encourage surrender to a higher power, and accountability as clients transition to individualized sober living.

That formula has been successful for Gibson, who has now been sober for more than a year.

"It's amazing that I'm happier now as a blind person than I ever was as a sighted person," she said. "The only difference is that now, I have God, and I have sobriety."

Her journey has been so successful, Gibson is also now is a candidate for a corneal transplant, which could give her back some of her sight.

She is scheduled for surgery at the Cincinnati Eye Institute at the end of July, and has invited Local 12 to follow her journey.

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Click HERE for more information about the Reset program.

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