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Former Sewickley woman returns to shed light on addiction

| Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2013, 3:33 p.m.
Terry Webb
Terry Webb

The 1980 Sewickley Herald Woman of the Year, who since has traveled the world to help fight drug and alcohol addiction, will return to her home church to make a presentation about her work.

Terry Webb, 80, of Lancaster — a board member and one of several founders of the Global Outreach for Addiction Leadership and Learning, or GOAL, Project, which began more than 20 years ago — will share information about the nonprofit organization's ministry in Africa on Dec. 7 in St. Stephen's Church. The Rev. Amanda Goin Burgess of Sewickley, event organizer and pastor at Trinity Church in Washington, Pa., said she first learned about GOAL when she went on a mission trip to Kenya a few years ago.

“I was inspired by their vision and mission, so I contacted Terry a few months ago to see if there was some way I could help with the organization,” she said.

Webb said those who donate to GOAL that evening will receive a gift card with the recipient's name on it and an explanation of how that donation could be used.

“For example, one gift will help provide transportation to someone in Narok or Kisumu, Kenya, to get to a recovery support group meeting,” she said.

Webb said she and her late husband, Jack, to whom she was married for 58 years, are parents of three grown daughters and the grandparents of 10. While living in Sewickley from 1962 to 1987, they were active volunteers. Webb moved to Sewickley from Ohio when her father, the late Ben Williams, became rector of St. Stephen's Church in 1946 and continued as rector for 20 years.

Webb, a volunteer professional and missionary, has a master's degree in education and a doctorate in family and marriage counseling/addiction intervention.

She graduated from Trinity School for Ministry in 1985 and trained for four years at the Pittsburgh Pastoral Institute to become a pastoral counselor. She worked on the streets as an outreach counselor for homeless addicts and helped them get into treatment programs. Listed in “World Who's Who of Women,” Webb worked at agencies and schools in various counseling and teaching positions and has been a volunteer for numerous causes, including environmental issues.

Among Webb's publications are “Healing Hope for Bruised Souls: A Church Training Manual” and “The Tree of Life.” She contributed to the “Praeger International Collection on Addictions” series.

Copies of “The Tree of Life” — focusing on how recovery is rooted in Christianity and how the 12 steps work — will be available at the presentation.

Webb, who raises funds for her own mission trips and helps support the organization, said the book is being used as a fundraiser for those GOAL representatives to train in Kenya.

Traveling internationally twice a year, Webb provides training for clergy and other professionals around the world to help equip them to respond to the family dynamics of the disease of addiction.

“We also recruit and train those in recovery and those trained in addiction counseling and prevention who then raise their own funds to respond to requests to do training, currently in African countries,” Webb said.

As a direct result of all of the GOAL Project's most recent worldwide efforts, 12-step recovery support groups exist in the African countries of Kenya, Tanzania, and Ghana. GOAL, based in based in Lititz, has worked in Russia, Romania, Tanzania, Ghana, Kenya, Egypt, Honduras and Costa Rica and soon might be working in Uganda.

Joanne Barron is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-324-1406 or

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