60118854_MDid you know there is an entire month designated to honor and recognize people in all forms of recovery? Now in its 28th year, Recovery Month kicks off in September to highlight the achievements of individuals who have reclaimed their lives through long-term recovery, and to honor the treatment and recovery service providers who make healthy recovery possible. These people include Behavioral Health Therapists, Social Workers, Addiction Counselors, Peer Recovery Mentors, and Professional Recovery Life Coaches.

Recovery Month also celebrates the gains made by people in early recovery, just as we celebrate improvements made by people who are managing other health conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and even cancer.

We know there are millions of people in North America whose lives have been transformed by recovery. Because these successes often go unnoticed by the broader population, Recovery Month provides a showcase for everyone to applaud these accomplishments.

The Recovery Month theme is carefully developed each year to invite individuals in recovery and their families and support systems to spread the message and share the successes of recovery. This year’s theme is JOIN THE VOICES FOR RECOVERY: invest in health, home, purpose, and community. YOU can get involved! Go to recoverymonth.gov to post your recovery stories, post events, get banners, posters and more.

It’s time for all of us to Pause for the Applause in September! Have you made any plans yet for September? Personally, I’m heading out to Los Angeles to a wonderful conference for women called She Recovers. This is a growing movement of and for women that began as an online community on Facebook. Dawn Nickel and her daughter Taryn Strong are the cofounders of She Recovers. They warmly welcome women who are recovering in all areas of their lives and who follow all pathways of recovery.

I encourage each one of you to be on the lookout for events in your area like a public “walk for recovery” or a marathon, or Recovery Festival or Picnic/Barbecue or a movie series or art show or online telesummit. All these events are designed to help individuals and organizations relax and enjoy one another as they pause to recognize the wonder of restored lives. And also, to increase awareness of the power of recovery and to encourage citizens to take action to expand and improve the availability of effective services in prevention, treatment and recovery support.
To locate an event in your area, call a local treatment program or recovery center or your state agencies for substance misuse and/ or mental health services. You can also find events here: https://recoverymonth.gov/events/find-events/2018-09

Make sure you and your family and friends take time to Pause for the Applause for the Miracle of Recovery!