Nathan Zavatsky, 30, works in Direct Client Care and Education at Adult & Teen Challenge Ohio Valley, after completing a six-month restoration program. Restoration is for clients who complete the year-long program but return at a later point, needing more help.
“My first time through the program was back in 2011,” Nathan explained. He returned to ATCOV 10 years later. His family life triggered him emotionally and he coped with drugs and alcohol. He grew up around abuse and drug addiction.
He was clean for a couple of years, started using again, got clean through rehabilitation, and repeated that cycle before returning to ATCOV. Nathan started using marijuana at 13 as an escape from his home life.
Since completing Restoration, things are different. “I have really given purpose in my recovery and my walk with God,” he said. “Purpose being a whole healed person and using my life to help be an example to the guys that are here—having healed for myself and really finding identity and purpose in that.”
Nathan recently earned his Chemical Dependency Counselor Assistant Certification. He hopes to move into working in the clinical side of recovery.
Personal conviction brought him to the decision to pursue his CDCA and make that his career. “I was kind of torn between pursuing welding for the purposes of being financially stable, but at the last moment, I really got challenged in my purpose and motives behind it,” he said. “Really, all I could come up with was money and I realized God really saved me for more than that.”
He wanted to do something more meaningful and impactful with his life and to also keep himself in an environment of sobriety and faith. “Honestly, that’s my foundation, my relationship with God,” Nathan said. Now he wants to help others and believes he’ll be able to do that because of his experiences.
“I’ve learned through all the mistakes I’ve made through the process and the cycles and I understand just all aspects of what it takes to feel and to commit to recovery and faith.”