Formerly hosted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and now supported by Faces and Voices of Recovery, the theme for National Recovery Month 2021 is “Recovery is for Everyone: Every Person, Every Family, Every Community.” Recovery Month celebrates the millions who have found recovery from mental health and substance use disorders and serves as an opportunity for education on the benefits of mental health and substance use treatment. SAMHSA defines recovery as “a process of change through which people improve their health and wellness, live self-directed lives, and strive to reach their full potential.”
According to SAMHSA, there are four major dimensions that support recovery:
- Health: overcoming or managing one’s diseases or symptoms and making informed, healthy choices that support physical and emotional well-being.
- Home: having a safe and stable place to live.
- Purpose: conducting meaningful daily activities and having the independence, income, and resources to participate in society.
- Community: having relationships and social networks that provide support, friendship, love, and hope.
Recovery does not look the same for everyone and is not necessarily defined by abstinence or cessation of symptoms, but rather through a holistic look at a person’s wellness. This year’s theme highlights the fact that everyone’s journey is different but we “are all in this together,” and recovery is possible, especially with support. To CARF, this theme highlights the importance of community in recovery, made even more apparent throughout the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has disrupted support services and increased social isolation. While recovery should be celebrated all throughout each year, it is especially important to recognize those in recovery, given the prolonged grief and anxiety caused by the pandemic and the accompanying loss of life and economic and family stresses, which have increased the risk of substance use disorders and relapse.
CARF International commends all providers for their courageous work in continuing to provide quality services to persons with substance use disorders during this challenging time. A great deal of recognition is due to providers and professionals in the addiction treatment field continuing to support those in recovery. With our surveyors, staff, and partners, CARF celebrates all those in recovery along with their families/support systems and communities.