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Light of Truth Center, Inc. celebrates 'Sweet 16'

Ursula V. Battle | 9/11/2015, 6:46 a.m.
Light of Truth Center, Inc. (LTC) is celebrating its “Sweet 16” birthday. In celebration of its birthday, the life-changing, non-profit ...
Light of Truth (LTC) Founder Vaile Leonard, stands in her former neighborhood where she once “copped” drugs. She is now 23 years clean, and her organization is celebrating it's 16th birthday. (Photo: Ursula Battle)

Light of Truth Center, Inc. (LTC) is celebrating its “Sweet 16” birthday. In celebration of its birthday, the life-changing, non-profit organization will host “Women of Jazz Supporting Women in Recovery” on Friday, September 25, 2015 from 7 p.m. until 11 p.m. The event will take place at Diamondz Event Center, 9980 Liberty Road, Randallstown, MD 21133.

Ginny Robinson, honoree

Ginny Robinson, honoree

Lametria Hall, LTC Executive Director

Lametria Hall, LTC Executive Director

The event will feature the Ollie Wright, Chandra Hassan, and all-female jazz artists. During the event, longtime LTC supporter Ginny Robinson will be presented with the organization’s first ever “Impact Award.” Evening highlights will also include a silent auction, dinner, and dancing.

Founded by Vaile Leonard, LTC provides residential therapeutic treatment for women recovering from addictions. LTC operates homes located at 224 N. Patterson Park Avenue and 1736 Payson Street; and embraces an innovative, three-phase process of recovery, transition, and restoration. According to Leonard, the process substantially increases the probability of each participant’s success and sustained restoration.

Women living in the homes work on a self-improvement plan while living as a family unit to support their own and each other’s recovery process. The homes have been credited with helping dozens of women overcome drug addiction.

“This event represents our continued growth and expansion in the wake of challenges,” said Leonard, who is a former heroin addict. “This is our year of transformation. This is the year of the ‘Mountaintop Experience’. We are just about at the mountaintop. We have worked hard and we are rolling up our sleeves for the next leg of the climb.”

She added, “The purpose of the event is to celebrate recovery, and to introduce LTC to a diverse group of people. We are always looking for new groups of social influence. This event provides a wonderful opportunity for me to talk about why we do what we do. We are still volunteer-run, but will need to have to make the transition from volunteer to paid staff. Fundamental systems have to be in place. For me, it’s all about keeping the doors open for the women we serve.”

Current and former LTC participants will also participate in the event.

“This is the first year we are doing it publicly,” said Leonard. “We have to talk about the courage it takes to change rather than the horror of addiction. It takes courage for a woman to allow someone to take care of her children while she is healing herself. We are celebrating that. We want to change the conversation around addiction from a moral dilemma to neural adaptive disorder.”

She continued, “It’s how our bodies function when it comes to repetitive behavior such as. eating, gambling, smoking or biting your nails. Our brain works in a similar way when it comes to repetitiveness. We want to change the conversation and talk about what it takes to change and how much courage it takes. It requires a level of surrender many people never get to.”

Leonard also talked about the event’s honoree and other supporters.

“Ginny Robertson has been an extraordinary, phenomenal, and outstanding contributor and supporter of Light of Truth Center,” said Leonard. “Every year she turns her home into a boutique from top to bottom and raises money for us. It has kept us in the black year after year and we wanted to honor her for doing that. Our other supporters include One God One Thought Center for Better Living. Our supporters keep us afloat, and we are blessed to have them."

Leonard said the event provides an inspirational platform for all.

“We have to work around the lack of funding and provide people with what they need,” she said. “I am so grateful people didn't give up on me. I have been 23 years clean now.”

Lameteria Hall is the organization’s executive director.

“I have served on LTC’s board of directors and volunteered consistently over the 16 years,” said Hall. “I have always been inspired by Vaile’s passion for service. She has been in it for the long haul, and her passion is so strong. The people she draws to her come in with that strong passion for serving. It is impact versus just making a difference. We are encouraging everyone to be a part of this wonderful, celebratory event.”

For more information or to purchase tickets call (443) 393-2109 or visit www.lightoftruthcenter.org