The Brass Tacks Recovery Team

Karifa Fofana – Lead Case Manager & Client Advocate

What I know to be true, is that without my recovery I would not have the life I live today.

Long before I held the title of Case Manager, Client Advocate, or even Treatment Technician, I knew I was an alcoholic and an addict. My journey towards recovery began at the age of 13, with experimentation in marijuana and alcohol as a means to cope with the feeling that I did not “fit in.”

My desire to become a musician only strengthened my resolve that I needed substances to illicit my best creative work. My failed attempts at getting my career off the ground led me to losing my sense of self and becoming more enthralled with the lifestyle, rather than the music. In 2011 at the age of 23 with no music career to speak of, I found myself struggling to go 24 hours without a substance. I was in and out of jails and institutions, with an overall lack of understanding as to how my life had gotten to this point. It was after being arrested for my 3rd DUI and facing prison time that I was able to finally concede that I needed help. With the assistance of my parents, I was able to get into a wonderful program known for its unwavering support of men in recovery. It was there that I was introduced to a 12- Step program.

At the suggestion of those who had stood by me, I resided in a transitional living home for a total of 19 months. During that time, I was able to practice life skills; skills that still play an integral part in my life today. I learned to develop healthy boundaries with those that I lived with, which would later allow me to engage in healthy relationships with my family. While staying in that transitional home I also began volunteering daily at the detox that I had successfully completed. It was there that my passion for helping others recover from alcoholism and addiction began to blossom.

Still not knowing that a career in the field of addiction and recovery was possible, I utilized my background of working in the restaurant industry to secure a position as an Operations Manager for a quickly growing franchise. After 2 years of success within the company, I found myself disinterested in the work that I was doing. After consulting with my family and friends, it was suggested that I follow my passion for helping others. With no formal experience outside of my consistent volunteer work at the medical detox where my recovery began, I accepted a position at a treatment center as a Detox Treatment Technician. Because of my innate ability to relate to clients, after only three months I was promoted to the position of Client Advocate. Shortly thereafter, I began my training and education to become a Certified Alcohol and Drug counselor.

Over the course of the last 4 years I have had the privilege of working with over a hundred clients and families to end the cycle of alcohol addiction and drug abuse. I pride myself on my transparent, honest, and direct approach I have. I believe that when these aspects are combined with compassion, the disease of Alcoholism and Addiction cannot thrive.

Karifa Fofana

Lead Case Manager & Client Advocate