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Staff Spotlight

Jamaica Bartz

Jamaica Bartz

We have an amazing staff at Waterfront Recovery Services. The work can be extremely challenging but day after day, they show up to support, encourage and help facilitate the change needed to maintain a healthy recovery. Our staff are the soul of the organization and we have deep appreciation for who they are and their dedication to making Waterfront Recovery what it is today.

Staff Spotlight Jamaica Bartz

When ADCS opened Waterfront Recovery Services in November of 2017, Jamaica was recognized as a valued asset while systems and protocols were being designed to treat clients with Substance Use Disorder in the new and very different medical model program. “She can look over data and see the big picture. She gets it,” one of the founders declared. Initially a Counselor at the new facility, Jamaica quickly advanced to Lead Counselor, Admissions Supervisor and is now Director of Admissions as well as Assistant Clinical Director.

Staff Spotlight - Jamaica Bartz

Jamaica coworker.jpg
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Jamaica with team members

Jamaica Bartz is one of the longest team member’s at Waterfront Recovery. Originally working as a detox specialist at the social model program run by Alcohol Drug Care Services (ADCS) Jamaica attended College of the Redwoods completing the Addiction Studies Program. Tapping into her life experiences as well as her clinical studies, Jamaica enthusiastically worked her way up to Counselor and site manager.


Before going back to school, Jamaica was in a typical cycle of drug use, much like many of the people she helps today. From the age of 15, she used off and on for 20 years, running the streets, in and out of jail - until something clicked. She knew she could do better and that she was capable of so much more. And most important, as a mom, she wanted to be there for her children.

When asked for a report card on WRS, Jamaica says it’s “always evolving”. She notes that after several challenging years, “we’ve moved mountains” to get to a place of stability. Now that Drug MediCal is funded for this region, “it’s made a huge difference, not just financially, but in the number of people we’re able to reach”. Importantly, services include longer term residential programs and extended transitional support for people from seven Northern California counties with progressive levels of care: outpatient, aftercare, and case management services - all the things one would need to be as successful as they can be. “I don’t know many other places that ‘wrap around clients the way that we do.’ Each step is a path to successful recovery and reintegration.”

Jamaica is a perfect example of the kind of change that can happen when a person decides to embrace life. Now, in addition to her leadership roles at Waterfront, she’s a busy mom, cheer coordinator, football mom and auntie. “I’m super excited to be going to a couple of cheer competitions next month with Eureka High. My daughter is a senior varsity cheerleader and decided to join the comp team. Well, actually they begged her LOL I'm so proud of her.”

Biggest challenges day to day - “I know this sounds cliché, but not having enough hours in the day because we’re trying to reach every person who is trying to access treatment,” whether it’s a family member or an agency advocating for them, “It’s also hard to watch people start to blossom or become the person they were meant to be and just completely throw it all away, walk away.” When asked why she stays at Waterfront, Bartz tears up, “Without places like this, people like me might not have a chance. I love it. I feel like it’s a part of my life.” She talks about her daughter watching her, seeing her get strong and deciding that she wants to pursue a similar line of work. “That’s when you know you’re making a difference. Through all the trials and tribulations, this place is my baby too.”

Photos: TOP - Jamaica collaborates with Kasee Duncan. MIDDLE - Stacy Smith with Jamaica doing street outreach.

BOTTOM - WRS staff attend memorial for co-founder John McManus. back row L-R Jesse Pearson, Sean Foreman, Rebecca Camlli, front row L-R Jessica Pearson, Jamaica Bartz, Dr. Bayan.


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