Central Texas juice bar hires people with past

Posted at 8:09 PM, May 11, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-12 11:45:11-04

When Summer Shine started Luna Juice Bar in 2014, she initially just saw it as busy work.

"I thought this was kind of going to be a hobby and I was just going to make juice and it was really just for my recovery," Summer Shine, owner of Luna Juice Bar, said.

Shine said she has battled drugs and alcohol since she was 13-years-old. Shine was addicted to crack cocaine. She's been sober for almost five years.

After a year of opening the business in 2014 and seeing sales increasing, she realized there was something she could do to give back.

"I realized there was a unique opportunity to hire other women who had been in the same position I was that had special requirements as far as needing to get to 12 step meetings and needing to go see probation officers and having to drug test for CPS," Shine said. "I created a safe space where women could come in and have a job."

Shine currently has seven women who have a past on her staff. One of them, Jessica Dugan, has been there about seven months.

"For three years I suffered from a drug addiction," Dugan explained.

Dugan was addicted to meth. She said she tried stopping on her own but couldn't.

"I wanted to quit using like I didn't want to use anymore, but I couldn't stop," Dugan said. 

Dugan got pregnant and managed to stop using during the pregnancy, but two months after her daughter was born, she used meth again. CPS took her daughter.

"I didn't have any reason to hold back in using and so I just lost every single thing possible," Dugan said. "Not just material things. I did lose all of that, but I lost my pride, my dignity, my self-worth, every bit."

A friend of hers called a rehab facility and she went to rehab for 57 days. Now she attends 12 step meetings.

"It saved my life," Dugan said.

After rehab, she met Shine. Shine offered her a job at Luna.

"Jessica is a miracle. She's exactly why we do this thing," Shine said. "She's the reason my husband and I opened sober living houses. She's the reason that I still make it to 12-step meetings now."

"On June 3, I'll be clean for a year," Dugan said with a smile.

Now, Dugan has a car again with a car seat inside for her daughter. She recently got her daughter back.

"A year ago today I never thought I would get clean, and I never thought I would get my child back, and I have. And it's awesome," Dugan said. "I wake up today and I have a purpose. That's the whole reason I used [meth] in the first place because I didn't have a purpose."

"You're not just buying juice when you come to Luna Juice. Although we make a really great product, we also have a really great story. And there's a lot of people that are healing here," Shine said.

For more information on Luna Juice Bar, click here.

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