The residential continuum for recovery from drugs and alcohol begins with a medically safe withdrawal from an addictive substance, followed up by a recovery program where individuals adopt a positive lifestyle along with the skills to remain clean and sober. They are then released back into the community with outpatient treatment, case management, and peer supports including AA and NA. For some, this is enough. For others, the ongoing structure of a sober house for an extended period is critical to preventing a relapse, building confidence, changing old habits and developing a solid system of support. According to a Journal of Psychoactive Drugs study in March 2011, approximately 75% of the participants leave a sober house after one year, almost 100% after 18 months. At one house studied, the abstinence rate improved from 11% of those individuals not going into a sober house setting to 68% for those that did.
Sober apartments exist in some communities, but none are available in the Greater Lowell Area. Lowell House (LHI) proposes to take the first step and develop this end of the support continuum, to make supports available “across a lifetime.” LHI and the Coalition for a Better Acre will create a partnership to address this need.