Working more towards my recovery story over the last ten plus years

To go from college graduate, career – oriented, full time mother to being hospitalized for marital abuse and marital discord along with codependency as the caregiver to others who are associated with drugs, alcohol and gambling at Northside and Peachford for a month. Along with overnight because of this hospitilization in August of 2004 losing all contact with your daughter’s overnight because of being a patient at Peachford which there has never been any addictive diseases on my part such as drugs or alcohol and never one hint, suggestion, implication or accusation into any wrong doing as a mother nor as a wife not ever. Not even once during my 21 plus years as mother and ex – wife. When you go from college graduate, intern to Esquire Mr. John Strauss, Sr., contract paralegal fully thriving and career oriented and full time care giver to 5 children as primary care giver and mother. When you have all of this taken away it is very hard on oneself and you lose yourself in the process. This state has caused me great distress and it has been identified by a Judge that this state has caused me great distress. Even though the state has rectified their shortcomings and mistakes made in the Juvenile Court system as well as the Superior court system, you cannot take away 10 years of parental alienation and suffering mentally and emotionally from being separated from your children due to being hosptialized for marital abuse and discord which was reported to Rockdale County Sheriff’s Department to Northside and from their to Peachford for daily recovery. You may view these document at your leisure or if you so choose to at :

I have been a graduate of View Point Health New Rock Day classes program and received recognition for inspiring others with strength and resiliency and reach goals with greater success. I have been a Respect Institute graduate per Mr. Joel Slack and the State of GA. I have also been a graduate of Georgia Peer Institute training through the GA Mental Health Consumer Network and have been working diligently towards my CPS Certified Peer Specialist certification so that I may continue to help my peers and others in the community with self – help recovery and whole health wellness.

Being a part of View Point Health for the last ten years and given my recent graduation of New Rock, The Respect Institute and The GA Peer Institute training along with my attempts at becoming a CPS for the state of GA, you are taught  to be a strong advocate for one self. Along with Rockdale County Task Force Against Family Violence urging you to be an advocate.

My advocacy began 20 years ago with my three legally adopted step – daughters in and out of the court room as full time primary care giver to 5 children over the last 20 years. Not just with my own biological daughter. It began 20 plus years ago my being taught by this State to advocate for children. Which I have continued to do so for all my children in and outside the courtroom.

Ten plus years of parental alienation and suffering missing my girl’s and missing out on their lives has been a complete nightmare for me and their lives have suffered as well. In insurmountable ways in comparison to the life I had mapped out for them for over ten years of a marriage and raising children. That hardship is their story to tell. But it has been great given our separation from one another over night.

1000+ Georgia Certified Peer Specialists Since October 2001

The State has rectified their once mistake time and time again but it has changed nothing as far as the reunification process of me and my daughter’s and my ex- husband continuing to alienate and estrange us by the act of hate. I want this state of GA to know that there have been 1000+ Georgia Certified Peer Specialists Since October 2001. 

And the requirements include:

> Candidates must have diagnosis of mental illness or a dual diagnosis of mental illness and addictive disease and must desire to identify themselves as a person with mental illness current or former consumer of mental health services.

> Applicants must hold a high school diploma or GED and may be requested to provide a copy of this document.

> Must demonstrate strong reading comprehension and written communication skills as indicated on their responses on the pre – test which is part of the application.

> Must have demonstrated experience with leadership, advocacy or governance.

> Must be well grounded in recovery

These facts are taken directly from the Certified Peer Specialist brochure.

The motto of the CPS being “Each One Reach One.”

I feel if I can attend college, work and raise 5 children that I just need to continue to apply until my application is finally chosen.

Student Success Stories :


“Metamorphosis of a Dream”

April Sasser, the mother of five, thought she would never get out of dead end jobs, and calls her experience with GVTC the Metamorphosis of a Dream Having four children and another on the way, April’s aspirations and hopes of attending college were dim. After being a domestic engineer for the better part of ten years, April says “I became consumed with the desire to heighten my level of knowledge by furthering my education, broadening my horizons and forever be released from the depths of dead end jobs. I wanted to demonstrate that stay at home mothers do possess the ability as well as capability of obtaining a college education and reaching their career goals. April believes her virtual experience through GVTC, along with her determination, desire and belief that something extraordinary can happen resulted in her “metamorphic” transformation.

In the Fall of 2000 with the support and encouragement of her family, April enrolled in the Business/Legal Office Assistant program. Her first challenge was to adjust her traditional school schedule around her family responsibilities. During her first quarter, April attended a workshop for Internet courses. She began her second quarter by taking Internet courses from the comfort of her own home. She says “I had the convenience of courses with a short walk from my bedroom to my computer. This was especially beneficial to e because if I had to attend on campus classes, I may not have een able to attend many of the classes. The online course allowed me to complete assignments at my convenience. The online procedures were very well explained and detailed which make it easily accessible for the student. The teachers were knowledgeable and informative and were always available and willing to assist or help with any questions or concerns over the course material. “April says that some of her fellow students call her the “online queen” because she takes so many online classes. Being an internet student offers many positive aspects as well as flexibility. Just as you receive a work ethics grade in your regular on site campus courses, you receive a work ethics grade for Internet courses. Out of the 18 classes required for my program of study, I completed 11 online through GVTC. I was always pleased with my experiences from the Internet courses and maintained good grades even though I was not in a regular classroom setting. With the assistance and support of the Internet course program and teachers and my devotion to school, the Internet courses I participated in were always a success. I am very proud to say that I have been a part of Georgia Virtual Technical College and Dekalb Technical College. I will be forever grateful and indebted to all those whether my family, friends, teachers and or administrators that have provided me with assistance, advice and encouragement. Apri looks forward to becoming a lawyer, but says she feels like something is missing since she stopped taking the online courses. April’s story doesn’t end there. When in the Business/Legal Office Assistant program of study, April incorporated classes from the Paralegal Program offered at Dekalb Technical College and obtained her Paralegal Certificate. She contaced the Newton County Department of Labor to discuss employment possibilities for an internship . After hearing April’s Story, Deborah Hoercher, a career specialist at the Newton County Department of Labor in Covington, asked April if she would be interested in telling her story to a group of her clients. Ms. Hoercher felt April’s story of devotion and persistence to her education and family could be beneficial to others. April agreed to speak to the group as a motivational speaker. In June of this year, April was the motivated speaker and was invited to come back and speak to additional groups in the future.

Apri, we wish you continued success!

August 2002 Volume 2 Issue 3 Velocity.

I have also written the introduction of the Paralegal Program at Dekalb Technical College chosen by Honorable Virgil Costley to write the introduction for the Paragraph.The Newsletter for The Georgia Association of Paralegals as a Charter Member of the National Federation of Paralegal Associations in April of 2002.

Paralegal Studies at Dekalb Technical College

In the fall of 2001, Dekalb Technical College began the Paralegal Studies program at its Covington – Newton Campus. The student may choose to obtain a degree, diploma or certificate in the Paralegal program of study and may apply for and receive financial aid where applicable. The Paralegal Studies program  provides educational opportunities that will enable them to succeed as paralegals. The curriculum consists of components designed to develop written, oral, and analytical skills in the areas of humanities, behavioral sciences, and mathematics along with specific training in legal ethics, legal writing and research, the court system, civil and criminal litigation, real estate practices, bankruptcy, tort law and contract law. Special emphasis is impressed upon students that the legal proscription against the unauthorized practice of law by anyone who is not a  licensed attorney, as well as the ethical duties attendant to the attorney – client relationship.

For further information into the Paralegal Studies program, please contact the Dean of Instruction Mrs. Delores Gaddie of the Covington – Newton Campus, or the Paralegal Studies program advisor, former Newton County Juvenile Court Judge, Mr. Virgil Costley. Details may be obtained by calling 770-786-9522 or visiting via the World Wide Web.

Dekalb Technical College is currently in the preparational stages of organizing and implementing a charter association of the Georgia Association of Paralegals (GAP) located in Atlanta, Georgia which is under the direction of the National Federation Paralegal Association (NFPA) The Association will allow membership of students as well as local legal assistants, paralegals and attorneys who are interested and would like to become a part of GAP/NFPA. Membership and affiliation with GAP/NFPA would allow for many positive benefits. Including national and local support, guidance and promotion of paralegals. For more information on the many benefits and membership information into GAP or NFPA please visit their website at http://www.gaparalegal.orgor Additional details in regard to membership will be made public in the near future or you may contact the student activities coordinator of Dekalb Technical College, Mrs, Jane Bell – Russo at 770-786-9522

April Sasser

Student Liaison, Paralegal Studies Program/Legal Office Specialist Studies Program

Dekalb Tchnical College

Covington – Newton Campus

The Paragraph April 2002 page 9

I was honored to have been asked and to write this introduction article by Honorable Virgil Costley while in college.

“I can do this too!” I can become a Certified Peer Specialist for the State of Georgia and help others along their path to recovery. I have become dear friends with my peers and plan to continue to hold them near and dear to my heart and to continue to cherish the many mentors I have had along my life’s path.

Going through 2o plus years worth of paperwork and cherishing each certificate for being room mother or volunteer in my children’s classes at school. Holding onto everything for over twenty years now. Paperwork that is and certificates. I lost everything during the course of my divorce. I was awarded a fair settlement in my divorce but received nothing from my ex husband. My entire life’s history gone in the blink of an eye. Gone overnight. My entire life. I had to pull myself together and start over with nothing as he gave me nothing and my pursuits of visitation with my girl’s were more important to me than marital property or personal property even though given I lost everything from my entire life and all photographs. Including everything from where and when I grew up. I lost my entire life in that marital home at then separation time of our marriage and never got one single shred of my marital or personal belongings or photography that I was awarded at the time of the divorce as I pursued custody and visitation issues as opposed to marital or personal property in the courtroom.

A new season is upon us with Autumn on the way and I will once again be completing my essay exam application for Certified Peer Specialist for the State of GA for training in October to be held in Savannah. Essay exam application’s being due at some point in September. You may also join me at my Covington News blog where I have been a full time blogger and photographer of community events for nearly 3 years now. November marking my 3 year anniversary as blogger at The Covington News and in attendance at many community events and shops and business in and around town and the Historic Square.

I will be moving in the next 2 – 3 months only a short walk of 1.32 miles from The Historic Square. I am so pleased about my upcoming move back to Newton County. Living in Rockdale can sometimes be very hard on me given this is where I lived during the course of my 12 year relationship and marriage to my ex husband and raised my family.  The move will be good for me and I will be a sidewalk away from the historic Square in downtown Covington. The Alcovy Judicial Circuit has been very good to me and I have been very pleased with all their decisions in my full favor each and everytime. I trust The Alcovy Judicial Circuit’s decision’s and will keep the faith that this is all part of God’s will and purpose for my life. To be a part of the O.C.G.A. and to be a strong advocate for  family violence victims, parental alienation and the mentally challenged. As Honorable Samuel Ozburn was my private attorney as a teenager during a custody issue between my mother and my aunt involving myself. I had the honor of having Honorable Ozburn as my private family law attorney and am very fond of him and trust his decision’s along with those in my full favor of the Juvenile court system as well. Honorable Ozburn has been a great mentor and hero of mine since a young teenage girl and I trust that God is working his full purpose and will in my life.The O.C.G.A. being my voice of vocation since 1992 to present. With the court’s in my full favor time and time again. I trust the Lord is working his intent and will for my life as he has planned for me and my girls and my son Tyler. Me and my son Tyler have always been very close and shared a great bond together as mother and son for over twenty years now. Praying fervently the road I have traveled has been the Lord’s intent, will and purpose for my life and that he has even greater in store for me in my future as  a Certified Peer Specialist and mother. Thank you for your continued support of my advocacy and life’s path with View Point Health and The Georgia Mental Health Consumer Network as I work towards the continued goal of becoming a CPS for this State. Thank you for your continued support and uplifting of my advocacy and blogs. I have came to know some great peers, friends and mentors along my life’s path who each one means a great deal to my heart in their own special ways. I am forever indebted if you have crossed my path and taught me life, love and the act of Advocacy. Thank you.










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