How Having a Community Atmosphere Can Create Stronger Sobriety.

[fa icon="calendar"] May 5, 2015 10:32:09 AM / by John Curtiss


Community involvement has been a cornerstone in many human developments from building a strong educational environment to creating a network of expanding business opportunities. Like the development seen in local communities for prosperity and future growth, creating a strong community atmosphere is an essential part of early sobriety.

Why? Because the camaraderie through sharing ones experience, strength and hope in their struggles with drug and alcohol addiction can lead to a strong bond in the recovery process. The foundations of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) were built with “community”- one alcoholic helping another - at the forefront as an integral part of maintaining long-term, joy-filled sobriety. Having others with similar experiences, struggles, and ultimate reprieve from the obsessions in the addicts mind seemed to be one of the best ways to stay sober.  It is in this “mutually shared vulnerability” that one finds that they are not alone and there is hope.

Sharing our experiences with others who continued to suffer was not only one of the core steps in the principles of AA, but was and continues to be a vital element in the move from a self-centered life to an other-centered existence. For those in early recovery, the fear and loneliness that often looms is generally only broken by the insights, experiences and compassion of others who have shared in their experience.  The foundations of every program established at The Retreat were built around the belief of these simple truths - that total abstinence from mood altering chemicals, daily practice of a “program of living” and connecting to a safe and supportive community is the core to long-term contented sobriety. It is in these vital relationships with a community of fellow travelers that one experiences the spirituality of recovery.

Living within a sober community is often one of the only ways for many to break the bonds of addiction. Building these principles into the daily lives of each member at The Retreat is also imperative to acclimating into everyday society. One of the greatest benefits of The Retreat is not only the amazing staff and volunteers who carry a message of hope and recovery to our guests, but the vibrant community of support throughout the State of Minnesota and in particular the Twin Cities area that has been one of the “pockets of enthusiasm” for recovery in the United States for over 65 years. 

For those considering seeking help from their alcohol or drug dependency, finding a community environment and becoming a “front-row member” of that community is vital to creating a full, meaningful and productive recovery.

It is important to remember that you are not alone. We are always here to help.

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Our Mission

Our mission is to improve the quality of life for individuals, families and communities affected by alcohol and drug dependency by providing affordable, effective educational services grounded in the Twelve Step principles of Alcoholics Anonymous.

“If you’re hungry for recovery, we will provide a dignified setting and surround you with people living recovery at the highest level; you’re going to get what you need. Everywhere you look you’re surrounded by people who believe in you and believe you have what it takes to recover.”

“We believe that if we provide a dignified, safe and supportive environment, accurate information about the problem and the solution, and a solid bridge to Alcoholics Anonymous, people will recover.”

“Everywhere you look you’re surrounded by people who believe you have what it takes to recover.”

John Curtiss



Topics: Alcoholics Anonymous, Sober Housing, Recovery Program, Drugs Adiction, Chemical Dependency

John Curtiss

Written by John Curtiss

John is President of the Community of Recovering People board of directors and The Retreat. He is one of the principle designers of The Retreat model.

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