Event planner. Bartender. Hair stylist.
A person who overcame major challenges with mental health. A woman who is making a name for herself in the event industry. A graduate of our program who is proud to call Reconcile New Orleans her home. This is how we know Faith. This is how she wants to be remembered. This is who she really is.
Faith’s journey at Reconcile started when she was 20 years old. “When I first came to Reconcile, I was really angry,” she said.
“Like my mom, I struggled with mental illness at an early age. Living in New Orleans, I have seen things that you wouldn’t fathom in your dreams. Dealing with PTSD, I was encouraged to have a counselor my whole life. It wasn’t until I came to Reconcile that I finally took advantage of the opportunity.”
Chef Joron Smith, affectionately known as “Chef Joe,” was another person to whom Faith could turn. “Chef Joe is always going to tell you the truth. He always lets you know that he understands where you’re coming from. Not only that, he is there to help you. I lost my Dad at age 13. Chef Joe was my father figure.”
At Reconcile, you are taught how to be successful right out of the gate. Simply abiding by Reconcile’s 8 Steps to Success, you become a better worker. A smarter worker. But before you can put your physical hands to work, your mind needs to be sharp. Your mental health needs to be in check.
“While at Reconcile, I realized that if someone asked ‘Who am I?’ and I didn’t know the answer, then it is time to seek help. The staff at Reconcile were the first people to ask me ‘What’s wrong?’ in order to help me answer that ‘Who am I?’ question.”
“You might not believe me, but counseling works. I am proof,” Faith says often.
Today, Faith works as a bartender and event planner, having started at Turning Tables—a 12-week bar and training program run by Liberty’s Kitchen—and still manages to be a hair stylist on the side. She works with clients particularly in the entertainment industry, creating drink menus, recipes, and naming cocktails that associate with a party’s theme or location.
She laughs about good times and loves to reconnect with her Reconcile family. And if one thing is certain, it’s that Faith has HOPE for the future.
You are helping Alumni like Faith use the transferable skills they learned at Reconcile and apply them to a wide range of industries. You are helping them take risks, chase dreams, and seek help to succeed in the workforce both physically and mentally.