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Employee

“I'm very proud to be a part of this program”

“I wanted to give back what was given to me,” said Kimberly Froebel about her motivation to become a recovery specialist at CHD. Indeed, she had received services from a recovery coach during her own recovery. “I want to be helpful to people who are struggling in any way I can,” she said. “Having my own lived experience is crucial. I know the struggle—having that common ground helps me be more relatable.”

Froebel works for CHD’s Stimulant Treatment and Recovery Team (START) at CHD’s Pine Street Behavioral Health Outpatient Clinic in Springfield, a group that specializes in treating those using stimulants, including cocaine.

Because she is in long-term recovery from alcohol and cocaine use, she truly appreciates the work that START does. “There aren’t a lot of stimulant use treatment programs out there,” she said. “In my own experience, a program like this would have been very helpful to me. So I’m very proud to be a part of this program.”

The West Springfield native recalled beginning her own recovery process when she felt the need to reinvent herself. “I was tired,” she said. “I was no stranger to relapse. It just got to the point where it was pretty much do or die for me. It was either seek help and get serious about it, or I would repeat the same behaviors.” She started going to meetings at Celebrate Recovery, a national Christian 12-step program, she began volunteering, she earned her GED at age 40, and she is currently enrolled in Holyoke Community College’s Human Services A.S. program. “Going back to school has been a new adventure for me—being sober has given me everything,” she said.

Froebel said that because relapse was part of her recovery, she tells the individuals she serves not to get discouraged if it happens to them. “I didn’t just go into treatment once and I was done—I had to keep working at it,” she said. “Many people associate shame with relapse, and I’m there to tell them that they shouldn’t. This journey is your journey and you’re ready when you’re ready. If you fall off, you just get back on and you keep trying. And one day, hopefully, it clicks.”