By Renee Foose, Special to the AFRO
The Rev. Vaile Leonard is the founder of Light of Truth Center (LTC), a non-profit organization that embraces a new innovative, three-phase process of recovery, transition, and restoration for recovering women. With five locations in Baltimore, LTC, is an innovative residential and outpatient therapeutic treatment program providing the necessary tools and techniques to aid residents with the life enhancing skills they need to succeed in their recovery journey.
“I believe women need a place to recover at their own pace,” said Leonard. “So, we provide wrap-around services from the moment they arrive at our door until we can help them to walk through their own door.”
Leonard’s life work is helping women battle addiction, out of a sense of gratitude for being free of a life of addiction, from which she considers herself still recovering. Her centers focus on helping women gain education, skills, and employment so they can live healthy lives without the stigma of addiction.
“Addiction is a moral dilemma,” Leonard said. “We treat the disease first then we begin the process of changing behaviors, and a part of that is helping women overcome the negative public perceptions of addiction,” she said.
Constance Mann-Leonard is a coordinator and facilitator of spirituality classes at LTC says one of the most important things they do is build a network for women in recovery.
“Women learn skills for re-entry, they receive new supports, and we teach them how to live from the inside out,” she said.
Leonard attributes the successful operation of LTC’s residential facilities to her spirit-driven, behavioral-centered approach.
“Just focusing on abstinence means there is no change in the behaviors that drive addiction,” she said. “We’re successful because we treat the behavior that drive the addiction” Leonard said.
LTC is currently working with local businesses to establish a model for employee assistance programs to help men and women with addiction while employed. In 2018, LTC’s programming received a three-year accreditation from CARF International International is an independent, nonprofit accreditor of health and human services providers in the areas of Aging Services, Behavioral Health, Child and Youth Services, Durable Medical Equipment, Employment and Community Services, Medical Rehabilitation, Opioid Treatment Programs, and Vision Rehabilitation Services.