Jill Oaks

Peer Supporter

Grassroots Empowerment Project has been there for me in one way or another since 2006, helping me to find my life’s purpose. They have been there to inspire me, give me a voice and an opportunity to channel my passion to “pay it forward”. There is no better place to do that than in the nurturing, supportive and healing atmosphere that is Grassroots Wellness. What an amazing and loving group of people to work with! Many thanks to all of you who bring such varied talents in such a loving way!!! Peer Support for me has felt like “HOPE on Fire” but to start with all I needed was just one tiny little spark from someone who had been through similar struggles and had come out even stronger because of it.

Christine McKahan

Peer Supporter

When I applied for Peer Specialist training with Grassroots Empowerment Project in 2012, I knew I wanted to know more about peer support, but I had no idea where this training would take me.  Since then, peer support has become central in my life and the lives of those around me.  Grassroots Wellness Peer Run Respite is where I focus most of my energy these days.  And this has changed me. I realize I am not alone with my own issues of mental health and substance abuse.  Recovery continues to be my foundation, enabling me to function in today’s society.  I could not fully enjoy my little house, my textile arts, my social life, my walks in the woods, my sweet cat, if I were not so involved as a peer.  My ongoing training and various experiences in peer support are constant reminders that I have room to share, learn and grow.

Stephanie Dolan

Respite Coordinator

Hi, I’m Stephanie. I am a recovering drug addict who takes great pride in offering and receiving the mutual support that is offered at the respite. It is such an honor to not only spread my message but to receive the continued support I need daily to continue my journey.

I’m a new mother and recently relocated to Menomonie from Barron County. I’ve overcome many obstacles in my life journey ranging from drug addiction to mental health issues to physical and sexual abuse.
With my hard work and dedication to a new way to live I found an opportunity of a lifetime here at the respite that I’ve only dreamed of in my darkest days to offer support to fellow individuals that are looking for support. Grassroots Wellness has helped me in ways I never thought possible to continue my path to recovery.
I plan to continue my education into more support-orientated professions and help others in their own recovery process, because like they say we can only keep what we have by giving it away.


Peer Supporter

I’m J. I work here as a peer supporter. I grew up in Amery, WI. I used to drink very heavily and have had 2 family members commit suicide. Now I just love helping people. Go Packers!

Sarah F New HeadshotSarah Ferber

Peer Supporter

My name is Sarah Ferber. After spending many years struggling with drug addiction, mental illness and the subsequent contact with the criminal justice system, I was able to find recovery. The biggest factor in my recovery has been connecting with other people who understand what I have been through and who are willing to walk on this journey of recovery with me.

I started working at Grassroots Peer Run Respite and Wellness Center in April of 2016 as a Peer Supporter. My position with Grassroots has blessed me with the opportunity to walk with others who are still trying to find their path to recovery. There is no better feeling than that of helping a fellow human being figure out what that path looks like for them.

I also work as a community organizer with EXPO (Ex-Prisoners Organizing) where I can lift my experience, and the experience of others, with addiction and the criminal justice system. We are all in this together, and each voice and experience has something unique to offer. The power of our collective voices is sure to bring about major transformation.

Lynette Meier

Peer Supporter

Hi! My name is Lynette and I was born in Eau Claire, WI and have lived here all my life. My passions include living my life, rather than have it happen to me, and DOGS! I love dogs! I am currently mom to three rescues, with more to come most likely. I like to walk, read, garden (although I’m not great at it — I can kill anything), and cook (even worse at that!).

I am super excited to be working with Grassroots and be of service wherever I can! I have dealt with addiction and depression my whole life and can relate to a wide variety of emotions and situations stemming from these issues. I believe that recovery and a happy life is possible for anyone! I also believe that without those times, I would not fully appreciate what I have now.

I will be glad today for the clouds or the rainbows. Both are meant for my good. And without both, neither has meaning.


Peer Supporter

Hello! I’m Mary! I’ve been with Grassroots Wellness for a year now and have fallen in love with it more everyday. The training opportunities and personal lessons I have learned while working with and around such amazing people has turned my life around in such a positive way.

If I am not working I can be found hanging out with my two kids… my son and my cat. If I find any free time I can usually be found roaming parts of Minnesota or Wisconsin trying to find the next trail to hike or video arcade to conquer.

I was always told to leave my personal life at the door and being a part of everything I have been the past year has shown me that you can be yourself with all of your strengths and weaknesses and still make a difference.

I am huge fan of using your creativity, struggles, and passion to help you achieve whatever it is you are working towards at whatever point you are in your life.