Why Alumni Programs Are Essential to Long-Lasting Recovery

Why Alumni Programs Are Essential to Long-Lasting Recovery

After someone finishes treatment for an addiction and its co-occurring conditions, they can look forward to a variety of alumni programs. These programs are known as aftercare programs. The goal of these is to help clients remain in recovery by providing essential services and opportunities for companionship so they can stay committed to maintaining sobriety. Much like treatment, it takes connecting with others to preserve your recovery.

Treatment facilities such as Driftwood Recovery understand the importance of alumni programs. As a result, clients have opportunities while in treatment to further learn about these programs and how they help them succeed. It's been proven that alumni programs can prevent relapses as well as improve mental health in general. Like treatment, participating in alumni programs is a voluntary decision. However, the positive results that can come from such programs cannot be understated.

What Happens in an Alumni Program?

Alumni programs vary from facility to facility. They all, however, share the same goals. These programs strive to provide a place where alumni can find peer support and companionship. It gives alumni a chance to check in with mental health care professionals to keep their recovery on track. Alumni programs also work to celebrate the success of their alumni and offer encouragement when needed. All together, these values and experiences work to help someone maintain their sobriety.

For the most part, alumni programs involve going to meetings and meet-ups. Meetings allow alumni to speak with peers or a mental health care professional about any concerns they have or difficulties they are experiencing. It's also a time when mental health care professionals can inform alumni about mentorship opportunities or advancements in mental health care. Meet-ups can involve anything from dinners to bowling or participating in fun activities. Some alumni programs will also feature service as an integral part of recovery. This allows alumni to give back to their communities and inspire others to do the same.

Alumni programs will often have a set schedule that is made weeks to months in advance. Participation is not mandatory but highly recommended due to their effectiveness. Every alumni is welcome to join, even if they are just looking for some sober fun.

Why Are Alumni Programs So Effective?

There are several reasons why alumni programs keep alumni in recovery. It gives alumni a place where they can find support and encouragement. Isolation is the enemy of recovery, and those without a support network have a higher relapse risk. Alumni programs are also a place for accountability, and alumni can draw wisdom from their peers to make healthy choices.

Another important aspect of alumni programs is the proximity to mental health care professionals. Alumni who find themselves struggling have a way to seek help immediately before a relapse can occur. Sometimes, alumni require further treatment, and that is okay. Being able to regularly touch base makes sure that they are on the right track to recovery. It can sometimes feel overwhelming when learning to maintain your recovery for the first time. Having professionals available to help can reduce a lot of worry and stress.

Alumni programs are also fun. Americans are often bombarded by advertisements and media depictions that falsely state that you cannot have fun without engaging in substance use. The peer pressure to use can be astronomical and difficult to navigate. Having a place you know that has fun and sober activities allows one to meet their enrichment needs without risking their recovery. Alumni programs are effective because they are flexible, encourage personal growth, and encourage peer connections. After all, who better to understand you and your struggles than a person who has gone through the same struggles as you?

Alumni Programs at Driftwood Recovery

The alumni programs at Driftwood Recovery serve several functions. They maintain the sobriety of clients who have graduated from treatment as well as inspire those currently in treatment. For example, alumni work with the community integration program to prepare current clients for life outside of treatment. By sharing valuable and hard-earned wisdom, alumni help their fellow peers in treatment find success. Even something as simple as encouraging a peer to not give up can inspire someone to continue with their treatment.

Alumni also meet with a mental health care professional once a month for a mental health check-up. This allows them to bring up any difficulties they are having and receive advice in turn. If something serious is happening that can jeopardize someone's recovery, the staff at Driftwood Recovery can act quickly. Along with weekly dinners and family support events, alumni can forge healthy relationships with their loved ones and peers.

As mentioned before, alumni programs can also be fun! Alumni at Driftwood Recovery are consistently celebrated for meeting important milestones at a monthly milestone celebration. Events such as renewal retreats and opportunities to give back to the community are other ways in which Driftwood Recovery encourages healing. With a dedicated App, alumni will never have to miss a meeting or event.

Of course, alumni are always encouraged to return for help should they be in need. Sometimes people need more treatment or stumble in their journey, and that is okay. The important thing to remember for alumni is that they will always have a safe place to return to and people who sincerely believe in them. Driftwood Recovery is not just a place to recover. It is also a place to become healthier and happier people.

A common misconception about mental health care is that clients are left high and dry once treatment is completed. This is not true, as many mental health care facilities utilize aftercare programs to provide services to their clients long after treatment is completed. Perhaps the most well-known of these programs are the alumni programs. These programs connect fellow “graduates” with each other to find understanding, companionship, and encouragement. Here at Driftwood Recovery in Driftwood and Austin, Texas, clients form a strong network with each other. This allows post-treatment clients to create a healthy support network of those who truly understand them. To learn more about the treatment and post-treatment programs at Driftwood Recovery, call today at (512) 759-8330.