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Growing Recovery Strong Communities in Maine

Issue 10
Getting Through These Times Together

by Leslie Clark

Recovery community centers are formed by people in recovery, for people in recovery. We build community by sharing our stories and listening to the stories of others. When we are in community, we are home. We are with our people.

Just a few months ago, when we could no longer gather in person, volunteers and staff from recovery community centers throughout Maine ramped up virtual support providing meetings and reaching out by telephone to thousands of people. Maine’s recovery community centers were dedicated to providing support so that no one had to go through this time alone.

Fortunately, the telephone is a familiar tool for many people in recovery. Ever since Bill Wilson received a telephone call in 1934 from his old friend, Ebby, a call that would change his life and ultimately the lives of millions of others, the phone has been a lifeline for people in recovery.

We are continually encouraged to just “pick up the phone.” Today’s technology allows us to see, as well as hear each other. From our homes, we’ve met each other’s pets, waved at young children running past, and had peeks into one another’s kitchens, living rooms, and gardens.

But, what about people new to recovery, whose phone lists were nonexistent or who didn’t even have a phone? What about people experiencing homelessness? Without the basics of housing, food, and safety how can one begin to address addiction and find a new ways of living?

All recovery community centers in Maine offer free peer recovery coaching. Recovery coaches are not therapists, counselors, clinicians, clergy or 12 step sponsors. They complete a nationally certified program and value all pathways of recovery.

Recovery coaches remove barriers and help with identifying and obtaining community-based services and resources, including housing and technology. Recovery coaches help people identify their own unique pathways for a joyful life.

We stay well by giving away what has been given to us. Visit www. portlandrecovery.org to find out more about upcoming trainings for recovery coaching and to connect with a recovery community center near you.

PRCC’s mission is to provide support, education, resources, and advocacy for people recovering from and affected by addiction, and to spread the message of hope throughout the state of Maine and beyond. PRCC’s vision is that every person affected by addiction in Maine will have direct access to a local recovery community center that provides support, education, and individual resources to enhance their ability to heal, strengthen and grow in their recovery pathway, throughout all stages of their journey. PRCC provides a place for the recovery community to grow and thrive at 102 Bishop Street in Portland. The center offers space for meetings and activities devoted to recovery from substance use disorder. PRCC is operated by staff and volunteers who are passionate about recovery, and every activity is created by and for people in recovery. PRCC offers peer support to individuals who use a variety of recovery pathways, and we honor each person’s unique recovery journey. We know from experience that successful recovery from substance use disorder requires support from others. Our center welcomes all who are taking steps to recover. PRCC works statewide to support the development of new recovery community centers so that every community in Maine has access to its own local center. By providing training, resources, and technical support to new and developing centers, PRCC’s Recovery Hub sustains a network of mutual support among the centers that develops leadership and empowers communities.

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