What is a Recovery Companion?

A recovery companion accompanies a client briefly but often for an extended period of time, to ensure that good habits are established, community resources are accessed, and clinical goals are met. Sometimes it’s enough just to know that there’s a person right

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there who cares for the client and is invested in his or her recovery. Often, clients need a “second set of eyes” to recognize the habits and behaviors that determine success or failure.

Our simplest definition of Recovery Companion work is "Transitional Support". The type of transition and the level of support will vary depending on each clients needs.

A recovery companion accompanies and supports a client, sometimes briefly but often for an extended period of time, to ensure that good habits are established, community resources are accessed, and clinical goals are met. Sometimes it’s enough just to know that there’s a person right there who cares for the client and is invested in his or her recovery. Often, clients need a “second set of eyes” to recognize the habits and behaviors that determine success or failure.

Bridging the gap between treatment and recovery can be the biggest challenge our clients ever face. Too often, the experience of leaving treatment is like a fish leaving a fishbowl: it aims for the river, but lands disastrously on the dock. Our companions provide transitional support, offering a safe and steady presence through a lonely and challenging time.

We understand that a client has to want to recover, and we cannot make anyone do what they do not want to do. Too often clients want to recover but lack the skills and support that would allow them to do so. This can be particularly challenging when clients are highly skilled in other areas, or appear to have the resources and support, but haven’t found success in recovery. It’s in the day-to-day relationship that we begin to recognize the gaps and challenges that clients may not be able to recognize or report themselves.

Working with the treatment team we can help ensure that clinical goals are met; that clients find peer support where they can be comfortable and begin to integrate into that community; and that clients learn new strategies and approaches to stressors - in real time, as they arise. We provide support and supervision for the return home from treatment - or when a client is called away from treatment for a family or work emergency, a wedding or corporate event. A companion can keep a client safe while traveling, during a stressful time, or through a life change. Most often, recovery companions make the transition out of treatment more gradual, transitioning from inpatient care.

Many clients begin with 24/7 coverage; as appropriate, they begin to spend some time unaccompanied each day as they become more comfortable on their own. Transition after treatment includes community reintegration; home life reintegration; and professional reintegration. These challenges are related but different. Recovery companions can provide education and support to apply the things they’ve learned in treatment to create a viable and sustainable recovery. It’s not unusual to need support in these varied environments, but it is unusual to have it. Post Treatment Services will be with the client - every step of the way.

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