Renaissance Ranch

Moving Forward With an Alumni Program in Recovery

Jan 14, 2024

Completing an addiction and mental health treatment program can be a major accomplishment. Moving on to the next step into early recovery can bring feelings of high gratitude, pure excitement, and sometimes even a bit of anxiety. Although an individual has been successfully discharged from their treatment plan, this does not mean they are cured of addiction. Intense cravings and unwanted triggers may still be problematic. For some individuals, early recovery can be a vulnerable stage. This can be especially so for those facing problems with a dual diagnosis. Moving forward with Renaissance Ranch’s Band of Brothers Alumni Program can provide the support needed to maintain long-term sobriety and mental stability for a growing recovery.

Recovery Statistics

According to a Substance Abuse: Research and Treatment study, statistics have estimated that approximately 40-60% of individuals facing problems with addiction will unfortunately relapse. In other words, about 85% of individuals with substance use disorder (SUD) commonly relapse within the first year of recovery. Thus, it is imperative to address the risk factors leading to relapse to stay on track while in recovery.

Early recovery typically requires an individual to make major sacrifices in their life to maintain a successful recovery. Choosing to make certain changes can prevent unwanted triggers, ease intense cravings, and bring new opportunities for additional support. Helpful changes may consist of:

  • Removing unhealthy relationships with individuals who misuse drugs and alcohol
  • Changing one’s residence to avoid the bar scene, clubs, or community-based drug control
  • Resigning a current position to distance oneself from negative influences
  • Taking time from loved ones to promote self-care practices
  • Discontinuing bad habits for a better quality of life

The Challenges of Early Recovery

With great sacrifice, comes the cost of intense loneliness. Although this is true, the right thing to do in this case is to reevaluate the four dimensions of recovery. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), breaking down helpful guidance principles can ensure a smoother recovery process. The four dimensions of recovery include making informed healthy choices, establishing a healthy yet safe living environment, providing purpose, and getting involved with one’s community for support.

Even though attempting change can make one feel lonesome, staying busy in early recovery can turn the table for a more positive perspective. Staying active can also prevent an unwanted substance relapse. An individual can overcome the challenges of addiction by: 

  • Participating in sober activities with likeminded individuals
  • Attending alumni programs, events, or weekly meetings 
  • Residing in a sober living home to learn sober living skills
  • Getting involved with the community to build new and healthy relationships
  • Independently exploring new hobbies to build improved self-esteem and a higher level of confidence
  • Journaling goals and consistently working toward them 

What Is an Alumni Program?

Not everyone is ready to independently face the world without professional care. Upon completing an addiction and mental health treatment program, it may be helpful for some individuals to get in touch with a program specialist to develop a plan moving forward. For instance, discussing aftercare services or ongoing support opportunities may help one achieve a more comfortable transition into early recovery. 

An alumni program ensures a safe path forward for an individual who may feel hesitant to move forward alone in recovery. Some individuals may not have a safe environment to return to after treatment. Maybe one has a solid understanding of the strategies learned in treatment but is having difficulty committing to a healthy routine. An alumni program provides an individual with trusted resources, information, and support to help one maintain long-term sobriety. It may also be tough for some individuals to cope with negative stigma and hurtful stereotypes in recovery. An alumni program may give an individual a stronger sense of acceptance through peer support to combat social isolation. Doing so may prevent an unwanted relapse. 

The Value of Participating in an Alumni Program

Choosing to move forward with an alumni program can provide many different benefits to an individual’s recovery. Knowing early and late recovery has its many challenges, ongoing support is crucial for a successful path forward. When transitioning back into society, it is best to spend free time with those who are headed in a similar direction to stay on track. One may notice cravings may begin to come to the surface if they are bored or spend too much time alone. Therefore, an alumni program may deliver encouragement through peers to maintain a healthy way of living. Benefits of participating in an alumni program might include: 

  • Support groups that provide a safe place to confide in others
  • Healthy built connections with sober individuals
  • Sober activities to help one stay busy and maintain healthy habits
  • Alumni events that give one a great sense of purpose
  • Developed routine and structure 

Moving Forward With Renaissance Ranch’s Band of Brothers Alumni Program

Participating in the Band of Brothers Alumni Program at Renaissance Ranch can be a great way to make new connections with others. Renaissance Ranch understands ongoing support is crucial to achieve long-term sobriety. Their alumni group holds each other accountable for what it takes to stay sober. Many individuals enjoy quarterly retreats, alumni events, weekly meetings, and the process of building new connections for light guidance in recovery.

Here at Renaissance Ranch, we believe in providing the best quality care to all those who participate in our programs. Sobriety is a lifelong journey, not just a simple destination that can be reached after inpatient rehab. The Band of Brothers is our alumni network. This helps establish a foundation and culture of sobriety that permeates every facet of the alumni’s life. The Ranch understands this concept deeply and hosts weekly meetings, along with quarterly retreats and a wide range of annual events to get newer members of the program integrated with the Alumni community. If you or a loved one are concerned about the transition into recovery, call Renaissance Ranch at (801) 308-8898 for ongoing support.