Tesiree Adams-Hargett's life story is a profound narrative of resilience, recovery, and empowerment. Born into challenging circumstances and overcoming significant personal struggles, Tesiree, at 56, embodies the strength and perseverance that the Bettie Brand Fund Spirit Award celebrates.
Early Life and Challenges: Born prematurely in an Afro-American, low-income family in 1967, Tesiree's survival was nothing short of a miracle. Her childhood in Philadelphia was marked by her mother's mental illness, alcoholism, and domestic violence. Moving to Georgia at seventeen was her escape from this traumatic upbringing.
Turning Point: Tesiree's 26-year marriage, marred by 16 years of abuse, and a subsequent decade of self-inflicted harm, were dark chapters in her life. However, her journey to recovery, now spanning 13 years, marks a significant turning point. It's a testament to her indomitable spirit and will to transform her life.
Achievements and Pursuits: Despite her struggles, Tesiree achieved commendable success. She gained a cosmetologist license, opened a successful salon, and was deeply involved in her children's lives. Her path to self-recovery led her to give back to others, with 12 years dedicated to supporting those in need.
Current Endeavors: Now a mother of three, grandmother of five, and a great-grandmother, Tesiree has rebuilt her life on a solid foundation. She remarried three years ago and has been actively involved in the community, walking professionally with women, supporting, and empowering them.
Impact of the Spirit Award: The Bettie Brand award represents an opportunity for Tesiree to further her education in fields that resonate with her life experiences. She aspires to be certified in Substance Abuse, Community Resiliency Model (CRM), and Motivational Interviewing, enhancing her ability to support others more effectively. Tesiree will use the award to cover tuition for certification courses.
Testimonial: As an advocate and transition coordinator at the Women's Resource Center, Tesiree has been instrumental in helping families rebuild after domestic violence. Her empathetic and affirming approach has made a significant difference in the lives of many survivors. This award will enable her to formalize her considerable life experience with professional training.
Recognition: Tesiree Adams-Hargett is more than a survivor. Her story proves that it's never too late to turn a new page and make a meaningful difference, both in one's own life and in the lives of others.
Special thanks to the Women's Resource Center to End Domestic Violence for nominating Tesiree for this award. They have recognized her incredible journey and her unwavering dedication to helping others find their path to recovery and resilience.