Emotions runs high at first ever graduation from Mont. Co.'s Family Treatment Court

Emotions runs high at first ever graduation from Mont. Co.'s family treatment program (WKEF/WRGT)

DAYTON, Ohio (WKEF/WRGT) - In the middle of an ongoing opioid crisis, we hear so much about the overdoses, the families ripped apart and an endless cycle of drugs, jail and death.

Out of all of that, a story of hope comes from an unlikely place: a graduation ceremony in a Montgomery County courtroom.

Wednesday, four people donned blue caps and gowns for the first ever graduation from the county’s Family Treatment Court.

Bethany Hampton was one of those four. She described the moments she reached rock bottom.

"Feeling like I had absolutely no hope to being in jail,” Hampton told Fox 45.

At the height of her active addiction, she lost her kids to the foster system. Today, her kids were in tears as she received her diploma.

"Second chance,” she said.

Treatment court started in 2016, after the county saw a 132 percent increase in child welfare cases. Area judges developed the pilot as an intense program for parents, with wrap-around services.

"Help them survive, and help them keep their children,” Juvenile Court Judge Anthony Capizzi said during the ceremony.

"It's been a long road,” said graduate Laci Bostick. "A lot of my family members use, you know. To have those extra support people was nice."

So, what happens on day one of the rest of your life?

"Do the next right thing everyday,” Bostick said.

"I know that I want to go back to school, and give my kids a really great life,” Hampton said.

Last fall, the program received a $2.1 million federal grant to expand services over the next few years.

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