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Common Goals expands services

Joe Festerson calls himself “just a run-of-the-mill, over-achieving, functional alcoholic.”

Now sober and 58, the retired union iron worker and life-long businessman is giving something back to the community. Three years ago, he opened Common Goals, a for-profit drug and alcohol recovery and counseling service in Nevada City, “with the permission and support” of his wife, Karen Festerson, who is an accountant by profession.

After a tedious, two-year process, Common Goals recently won certification from Medi-Cal and a contract for the state’s Proposition 36 rehabilitation program through Nevada County Superior Court.



“It’s mostly to give people an option” in their recovery, Festerson added.

The service complements the area’s nonprofit recovery program, Community Recovery Resources.




Addicts often require several trips through rehab for recovery to take hold. “Sometimes people get into trouble and develop resentment” toward the program they are in, Festerson said. “Just having another door to go through, you’ll feel better about going” back into a rehab program.

Common Goals has helped about 150 people since opening its doors at 727 Zion St., in Nevada City. The office, with three drug and alcohol counselors, has about 35 clients, but with some expansion in staff could accommodate up to 60 ” giving western Nevada County a broader base for recovery services.

“Being Medi-Cal certified allows many people to seek drug treatment that before could not afford it,” Festerson said.

Common Goals also has a licensed marriage and family therapist; a retired doctor and a retired pharmacist who offer classes on healthy living, sexually transmitted diseases and nutrition; and classes with a staff member of the Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Coalition.

“Our newest opportunities available for our clients are classes on budgeting, debt solutions and how to handle money, brought to us by a financial advisor,” Festerson said. He’s also looking to offering anger management classes, including for batterers, he said.

For more information on Common Goals, call 265-2914.

To contact City Editor Trina Kleist, e-mail tkleist@theunion.com or call 477-4230.


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