Voices for Recovery
During my 26 years in long-term recovery, I’ve learned that no one in recovery got here without being coached, mentored, and assisted by peers – before, during, after, or even in the absence of formal treatment. We all have one thing in common: we were led into recovery by caring, compassionate, and competent peers who got there first, but not on their own.
As part of my long-term recovery, I have become an advocate. Advocacy is our strongest tool to change policy and be a voice for the recovery community at the local, state, and federal levels. I chair PRO-ACT (http://www.councilsepa.org/programs/pro-act), a well-respected, highly-visible, and vibrant grassroots organization for people affected by addiction and their family members in the greater Philadelphia, PA area.
I am also grateful to have helped my son begin and sustain 13 years in long-term recovery and my brother celebrate 10 years of sustained recovery. Peer assistance, recovery coaching, and recovery mentoring from reliable professional and recovery resources played a significant role in our recovery. We had good role models in recovery that enabled us to imitate what they did to be successful. We each had a minimum of 30 days of residential professional care followed by aftercare and regular attendance at 12-step meetings. We all found the same pathway: timely intervention, a continuum of treatment, and recovery support for some time afterwards.