Recovery is for everyone because it benefits everyone. In recovery, we build new connections to ourselves, our families, and our communities. The Recovery Month tagline, “Recovery is for Everyone: Every Person, Every Family, Every Community”, reminds people in recovery and those who support them that recovery belongs to all of us. We are all called to end gatekeeping and welcome everyone to recovery by lowering barriers to recovery support, creating inclusive spaces and programs, and broadening our understanding of what recovery means for people with different experiences.
While it may be tempting to characterize recovery as a universal experience or a single journey, our community is proof that there are as many pathways to and of recovery as there are people. Our strength is our diversity and because of who we are, the recovery community has unique opportunities to learn, challenge, grow, and dream.
Looking beyond our individual experiences strengthens and supports recovery in all its forms. The recovery community has a powerful foundation of mutual aid, peer support, and adaptability. As we grow in empathy and understanding, we save lives by adding protective factors and building resiliency. We honor the incredible contributions from communities within recovery as groups connect and implement resources that serve their unique needs. The powerful bonds built-in recovery are life-altering. To honor those bonds, in every form they take, is a significant factor in sustaining recovery as well as building bridges between our communities. When we connect with open minds and hearts, we learn from one another and create life-saving opportunities.
Recovery Month educates others about recovery from mental health, substance use, and co-occurring disorders, the effectiveness of treatment and recovery support services and that recovery is possible. All of us, from celebrities and sports figures to our co-workers, neighbors, friends, and family members, throughout our lives have experienced peaks and valleys, both big and small. And, with strength, support, and hope from the people we love, we are resilient.
By asserting that “Recovery is for Everyone,” we reduce the stigma surrounding people with substance use or mental health disorders, especially when complicated by oppressive forces like white supremacy, systemic racism, punitive criminal justice systems, and policy that excludes less privileged people. Recovery is always person-first. “Meeting people where they are at” translates into acknowledging their unique experiences and needs, including people of different cultures, identities, backgrounds, and communities.