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Alumni Events Recovery School Service

Visions Cultivates Community

Walking into our Day School is emblematic of the cultivation of community. The kids are in communitysupport of each other, bonded by difficulty and a desire to change, and they are aptly supported by a team of a deeply compassionate clinical and support staff. On a given day, you may encounter laughter, tears, struggle, and frustration, joy, triumph, and accomplishment. And regardless of which of those experiences is present, they are held in a safe container of support; a container which is ultimately community.

 

A fear that is often present for teens in treatment is the suggestion that their peer group will need to change.  In a successful environment of recovery, that peer group does need to change. However, part of the recovery process includes the cultivation of a healthier, more supportive community of peers–a community that is desirous of shifting the old paradigm to one that is conducive to the mental health and stability they seek.

 

I asked Joseph Rogers, MDiv Canditate and teacher at Visions for 5 ways in which Visions helps teens cultivate community:

 

1: Engaging in social activities together. Visions supports weekly sober fun activities and recovery fun groups. Clients in our extended care have regular weekend activities such as paintball, beach trips, gardening, hiking, et cetera.

 

2: Having a spiritual support community such as Young People’s AA, where the young people are in charge of their own groups. This creates a sense of empowerment and encourages healthy independence.

 

3: Allow the clients to support one another. When a client asks if they can check in with another client, we almost never say no. It’s important that the clients see each other as a support system, especially post treatment.

 

4: Alumni activities. Keep our former clients in contact with each other and remind them of the support system they have in place. Our annual Alumni Weekend is a prime example of this. Additionally, all alumni are encouraged to come to the Friday night recovery meeting.

 

5:  Visions encourages alumni to sponsor current clients and to come back to work at Visions as employees. This way, clients can see the full cycle of recovery.

We are looking forward to seeing alumni and current clients and their families at the upcoming Alumni Weekend.  This community is at the core of what we do, and supporting families in their recovery is our heart.  It is always a joy to see our alumni thriving in their recovery and reconnecting with them.

Categories
Guest Blogs Mental Health Recovery Suicide

Guest Blogging in the Recovery Community

I was recently asked to participate in Pat Moore Foundation’s Guest Blogging program. What an honor! It’s wonderful to be a part of a blogging community that not only supports other recovery bloggers but is willing to join forces with them. The blog I wrote is called “Obscure Thoughts of Suicide are Still Thoughts of Suicide” and addresses suicide and addiction from a more introspective and personal perspective. I wrote it on the heals of one of our more recent blogs entitled “Suicide, Neither an Answer nor a Solution.” With the onslaught of bullying and teen suicides, It’s important we pay closer attention to the subtle signs so we can offer help and solutions. It doesn’t feel good to suffer from suicidal ideation. It’s scary and it’s lonely. We as parents, friends, teachers, counselors, therapists, and doctors can help—one active-listening moment at a time.

Check out the guest blog from Rob Grant aka Recovery Rob on Twitter as well as the wonderful write-up he did about it. He has almost two decades of recovery and writes regularly for the Pat Moore Foundation. He is essentially, the “me” of the Pat Moore Foundation.  You can also see some of his blogs here.

Categories
Alumni Events

Annual Alumni Event

Once again, we’ve happened upon that time of year for some organized, sober fun at our annual Alumni Weekend! In addition to the standard softball game that everyone invariably loves, there are a slew of other happenings ready for the taking. Haven’t RSVP’d yet? You still have time! The event is sure to be a blast for the entire family!

Aside from the planned activities, this weekend also proves to be a great time for reconnecting with alumni you haven’t seen in a while. It’s also an opportunity to discover how much fun you can have without the hindrance of drugs and alcohol. There was once a time when a party meant getting the various mind-altering accouterments “necessary” to have fun, only to find that the party wasn’t as full of jocular camaraderie as anticipated, mostly because you were too high to remember. Things are much different now.
Sometimes we get so caught up in our difficulties in relation to recovery, we forget how much fun we can actually have. As we begin to walk to the path of rediscovery as sober beings, we have a chance to experience life in a new, more conscious way. Sober, we relearn how to dance in the waves at the beach, explore our wonderful mountain ranges, ride bikes, swim, laugh with abandon, play softball, or just hang out with friends. We discover that  having fun is not only possible, it’s necessary. In my own sobriety, I’ve found that learning to laugh in the face of adversity is far more beneficial than succumbing to the self-deprecating call to numb out. To be honest, I’ve had more fun sober than I ever had using–I laugh more, and I experience life as a fully engaged human being.
So, dust off your sense of humor and free-spirited nature and come hang out with some old (and new) friends this weekend. There will be meetings, bowling, dinners, and of course, the now infamous softball game. What’s not to love, eh? Plus, the competition on Sunday will be fierce, with staff gunning to win their title back!
**You can RSVP by emailing: alumni@visionsteen.com or calling 818-889-3665**