The Yates County Drug Treatment Court hosted its 34th graduation ceremony Wednesday morning, March 28 in the County Courthouse, adding two more successful graduates to the total of 86 since the court was founded in 2003. Attended by the YCDTC Team and many of its volunteers, as well as representatives from the county legislature, the ceremony was followed by a reception for the graduates and their families and friends.

Presented by Judge Jason L. Cook and YCDTC Coordinator Evelyn M. Watkins, the two female graduates, both in their mid to late 20s, each spoke of how vital the treatment court’s supervision, sanctions, and support were to them in achieving their sobriety.

The impact of drug addiction goes beyond the individual drug users. YCDTC graduates usually ask family members, friends, or counselors to also speak at their graduations to remark on what they saw in that wider impact, and what they saw as the graduate’s progressed to recovery.

Both women admitted that the journey was not easy or without reversals, but that it was the most important one of their lives.

Judge Cook concluded the ceremony by praising the graduates. “Both of you have come so very far. When you look at yourselves in the mirror, you are not the people you were when you entered.”