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It is easy enough for addiction treatment centers to say they help clients get sober for life. But as someone seeking recovery, you may wonder how a temporary program can deliver on such a long-term promise. These concerns are valid — studies do show that even the most comprehensive course of care may fall short without an ongoing structure to support you in independent life. The stressors and pressures of work, school, home responsibilities or interpersonal relationships can lead to relapse if clients do not have a space to share their struggles and successes with others in recovery.

At Riverside Recovery, we can confidently reassure our clients that when we say we provide sustainable sobriety, we mean it. We are dedicated to supporting each client throughout their journey in recovery via our full continuum of care, including lifelong recovery resources through our Alumni Program.

We believe that each client will always be a part of our Riverside family. We know how important continued engagement is post-treatment, which is exactly why we created our Alumni Program. We work hard to maintain our recovery community — we keep in touch with our alumni near and far, and we host regular opportunities for alumni to visit our beautiful Tampa facility or participate in community and volunteer events. In addition, our alumni prove a vital resource for our current clients when they visit and speak about their experiences after treatment.

With connections to others being one of the key points of continued recovery, our Alumni Program focuses on fellowship, service opportunities and fun in recovery. We also provide ongoing recovery support from Riverside staff, including check-ins, referrals, references or assistance with care coordination.

Our Alumni Events

Monthly Meet Up and Eat Up

On the 15th of every month, our alumni choose a 12-Step meeting to attend in the community, and they meet for fellowship either before or after the meeting. This is an amazing opportunity for newer alumni to meet and engage with each other. Since this event falls on different days of the week each month, it also allows our alumni group to attend different meetings and explore recovery resources throughout the Tampa Bay area.

Monthly Success Story Sunday

These monthly events offer Riverside Recovery alumni an opportunity to come back to our Tampa campus and share their personal experiences and successes with our current clients and families. There is nothing more powerful and inspiring than seeing the strengths, hopes and triumphs of others who have been where we are, and who have continued on the journey in recovery. Additionally, Success Story Sundays coincide with our family weekends to encourage broader engagement.

A Poem For Our Alumni, From An Alumni

Right here, right now

I’m 20,000 feet above this wonderful earth. Feeling like I just left prison and my eyes are wide open and soaking in every single item I possibly can. I realize now the prison I had been in was built on false pretenses and a mirage of fake reality.

I forgot what real life can feel like when being so isolated and in that bubble of Riverside. That place has made me aware. I’m so grateful for RR.

Time, also known as life, has nothing but hopeful and eternal happiness for me ahead. I understand life will never always be that perfect ice water on a warm day but life is grand. The bumps, the fall, the landslides they are part of it. I no longer fear this life. I am ready, I am driven. You could throw me to the wolves and tomorrow I will come back leader of the whole pack.

Not cocky or arrogant. No it’s different, very different. Arrogance is another form of fear. Turning my life over to my higher power, feeling this universe. I’m diving into my individuality and embracing who I am. I’m ready, I’m willing. I’m letting life come to me, one single breath breath at a time. One single step. One single day. Today is that day.

This feeling, the willingness and intrinsic idea of moving forward with no regrets or baggage. It’s a feeling of being light, ready and adaptable. The high I feel of being in this world and my eyes looking forward and not seeing shadows is happening again and again. The anger has left my body. I’m still weaker than I should be but this mindfulness and my higher power are building this machine that embraces everything. I welcome it, I welcome the future with open arms.

Everyone will have their day to die, there is no reason to ever speed that process up. Building pressures and barriers solely because Society says that needs to be done. It’s not normal. I was always acting, taking on roles and shapes of what everyone wanted me to be. Loving materials and ideals of a false narrative of life can become a dark path.

This world, the earth and atmosphere are so loving and involved. Here and now is life. It’s the greatest gift we all have. Its become something said often but never really practiced or appreciated. How many times have the words been said, “live in the moment?” Those are the best guidelines yet the saturated phrase goes unthought of almost instantly.

Really embracing right freaking now. This very second. Breathing, wiggling your toes, seeing, feeling and living in the very present is a life altering experience. Worry fades, sadness dissipates and fear finds itself homeless.

Feel it, close your eyes and dance with it. She’s beautiful and wondrously involved in every thing at our fingertips. Fuck money, fuck this social knot that is tightening like a noose. The time is now. It’s always been right here, right now.

Smile bigger than ever. Sing louder, run faster. Feel harder and enter every moment with welcoming arms. Overcome anything, leave nothing. Grab the seconds with every single cell of your being. Love deeper, so much deeper. Thank more and give the most. Be here, Be true, be honest, and always be you.

Learning New Skills to Bolster Our Recovery 

Our recovery program can entail anything that supports our sobriety and helps us stay on track with our goals. For many of us, this work can include learning entirely new skills that we might not associate with recovery because they don’t necessarily relate to sobriety in particular, but that bolster our recovery in various differentRead More

Gifts We Receive in Recovery 

One thing that can help us in our recovery is to focus on the gifts we’re receiving by staying sober and by working on our health and peace of mind. Sobriety gives us so many life-changing gifts that we sometimes take for granted and forget to be mindful of. When we remember them and focusRead More

Positive Thinking in Recovery

When we’re working to recover, we want to supplement our sobriety with as much self-supportiveness as possible. Often the ways in which we talk to ourselves and think about ourselves can actually hinder our sobriety. When we feel down on ourselves, self-hating and insecure, we’re more likely to want to return to our drugs ofRead More

Shedding the Cultural Stigma We’re Still Carrying Within Us

Some of the hardest emotional work we do in recovery is releasing the ways in which cultural stigmas around addiction have hurt us over the years. We’ve been carrying and holding onto the very negative perceptions people have of us and allowed them to impact how we feel about ourselves. We’ve internalized the unkind, dismissiveRead More

Surrendering to the Healing Journey

When we are actively working towards recovery, there are some habits we hold onto that can slow down our progress and impede our ability to get well. We have a hard time relinquishing control over how we think things should go. We hold on tightly to certain expectations. We worry excessively, we obsess about things,Read More