Peer Support
a man is happy to learn how does a peer recovery support program work
By BrightView
Author Dan Bielecki, LPCC-S, LICDC-CS
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Dan Bielecki, LPCC-S, LICDC-CS

Dan is a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor with supervision designation (LPCC-S) and a Licensed Independent Chemical Dependency Counselor... read more

Published: November 12, 2021
Updated: November 5, 2021

After you complete a substance use disorder treatment program, the success of your recovery depends on various factors. Many treatment centers offer continuing care programs such as aftercare or alumni programs to provide the support needed to maintain sobriety. Patients who enroll in these extended programs continue to benefit from access to healthcare professionals who provide guidance and support as required. While an aftercare program can be an essential part of your lasting recovery, you will see maximum benefits when you take advantage of a peer recovery support program.

At BrightView, we understand the importance of a robust, well-rounded support system to promote lifelong recovery. Our comprehensive treatment programs incorporate group and family therapy to help strengthen your support system. In addition, we can help connect you with a peer recovery support program to ensure you have access to all the resources needed to succeed at sober living. Call us today at 888.501.9865 so you can start feeling better tomorrow.

What Is Peer Recovery Support?

Peer recovery support programs are different from other types of recovery support. They distinguish themselves from treatment programs and 12-step programs in that they are facilitated solely by those in recovery. The roles and language used in peer recovery support programs are different as well. There are no therapists, counselors, or sponsors; instead, all members are referred to as peers whether they are in recovery or the loved one of someone in recovery. Any person in recovery providing support to another is commonly referred to as a peer leader. 

Peer recovery support is designed to assist people in all stages of recovery, including:

  • During treatment at a facility, as a complementary component of the recovery plan
  • After completion of treatment, to decrease the risk of relapse
  • Pre-treatment, if a person is hesitant to get professional treatment or is attempting to recover at home on their own

As you can see, a person does not have to undergo treatment at a facility to be part of a peer recovery support program. These support services are open to all who wish to find support for their substance use disorder. 

How Does a Peer Recovery Support Program Work?

Peer recovery support programs are based around four types of social support that have been found to be most beneficial to lasting recovery.

  • Affiliational support – This type of support fosters a sense of community for those in recovery. By providing a welcoming, social setting that promotes sober living, members have a place to socialize without fear of triggers. They can enjoy recreational activities with others on similar paths.
  • Emotional support – Although individual, group, and family therapy can help provide emotional support, peer recovery support programs offer empathy and mentoring from others navigating healthy recovery.
  • Informational support – This type of support involves helping those in recovery learn life skills to function better in their day-to-day lives. Peer leaders may provide training and classes on topics such as parenting, job interviews, and self-care.
  • Instrumental support – This centers around connecting others with necessary services such as child care, transportation, and healthcare. Sometimes, these tasks can stand in the way of recovery, preventing a person from attending treatment sessions, getting medical care, or holding down a job.

When you join a peer recovery support program, you will benefit from the above types of social support. With this social system in place, along with services from a treatment center or other healthcare professionals, you will be set up for a healthy recovery. 

Find the Peer Recovery Support You Need with BrightView

When you want recovery support that goes beyond what traditional treatment centers and 12-step programs provide, reach out to BrightView. Our comprehensive outpatient treatment programs can supply you with the tools you need to achieve recovery. To ensure your continued success, we can connect you with a peer recovery support program. Give us a call today at 888.501.9865 to learn more about the benefits of peer support.