Jason Jones of Morehead, a former drug addict and now a counselor at Addiction Recovery Care (ARC), presented recently at the 2015 conference of the Kentucky Counseling Association (KCA) in Louisville.
His presentation was titled, “Introducing Abstinent Members into Suboxone Counseling Groups.”
Considering that only eight years ago Jones was in treatment for his own drug addiction, his journey has been nothing short of miraculous.
He said that he entered a six-month treatment program in 2007 after being convicted on four counts of forgery.
Jones said he had taken checks from another person and used those checks to obtain cash to purchase drugs.
At one point, a judge told Jones that he was “unrehabilitatable.”
“I told him that wasn’t even a word,” said Jones. “I was at the end of my rope and I knew it didn’t matter what he was saying because in my mind that was the last option I had at life. I knew jail wasn’t going to change me and I’d be right back out using again. Treatment was my only way out and he was making a joke out of it.”
After he completed treatment, Jones later thanked that judge for giving him a shot at getting his life back.
A year later he got an opportunity to give back and share the message of hope and recovery to other individuals and families affected by addiction.
He got his start in the substance abuse treatment field working as a detox associate and later a detox counselor at the Morehead Inspiration Center (MIC).
During that time he got a chance to return to college and applied for readmission to Morehead State University. But even getting to the classroom proved to be a difficult task.
“My academic record wasn’t very good so I had to go in front of a board to get readmitted,” said Jones.
“They discussed it and said I could take one class. I made an A and the following semester they said I could go part-time. I made an A in those classes, too, so then they said I could come back full-time. But the way it was set up I couldn’t complete the program I wanted and take care of my son and work at my job at the same time. But I was able to graduate with a bachelor’s in university studies.”
Upon graduation, he was offered a job as a full-time position as an addiction counselor with Pathways, Inc., where he began working toward and eventually earned state certification as an alcohol and drug counselor.
Two years ago Jones went to work for ARC in the company’s medically-assisted outpatient office in Mt. Sterling.
Now he oversees the ARC Lexington office and is the central replication team leader for the company.
His job is to go into communities and replicate ARC outpatient treatment offices throughout Central Kentucky.
And in about a month Jones will graduate with a master’s degree in professional counseling from the University of the Cumberlands and will become a licensed professional counselor.
He attributes the changes in his life and his professional accomplishments to his faith in God.
“To come from a worthless drug addict in a jail cell that nobody wanted to what I am now is pretty humbling. There’s no way that could happen without God,” said Jones.