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A Moment of Hope and Truth

By Shelby Donahoo, Bandera Therapy Resource – Tucson, AZ


This story comes from Villa Maria Health and Recovery in Tucson, AZ. This acquisition July 2022 is a SNF AND a Substance Abuse 30-60-90 day inpatient facility, the first of its kind for Ensign Affiliates. Pictured is James Fleming, current full-time driver for Villa Maria Health and Recovery.


James started as a patient in the Inpatient Recovery Program, spending over 90 days focusing on maintaining sobriety. During his time there James demonstrated the desire to grow as a person, attending daily groups and 1:1 counseling.


James also attended Villa Maria’s Community Reintegration Programs. He participated in resume classes (taught by Therapy Leader Jesus Salazar) and mock interviews with IDT to prepare him for his time outside the sobriety program. He took feedback well and adjusted with each interview.


While still inpatient, James interviewed and got the position as Therapy Volunteer where he had the opportunity to assist the rehab department and be exposed to how PT/OT/SLP help patients in a SNF setting. James assisted with SMIPS (Substance Misuse Inpatient Program) groups, led by OT for patients with history of substance abuse on the Skilled Nursing side. James became a mentor to those patients on the skilled side struggling with addiction, encouraging them to attend the same groups he would attend on campus. James was very passionate about his growth and that of others.


Once discharged from the recovery program, James applied and interviewed for the fulltime driver position and is now part of the Villa Maria team and Tucson community.


Villa Maria is expanding the Inpatient Substance Abuse program from 30 to 60 beds through renovating property on campus. It will be amazing to see the impact they have on the Tucson community as they grow.

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