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Five Key Insights from Riverside’s Recovery Celebration

Riverside’s fourth annual Recovery Celebration, sponsored by our Connect2Recovery program, was a powerful event that highlighted the determination, courage, and support needed to work through addiction. Individuals living with substance use challenges often feel isolated, which can create barriers to their pathway to recovery. This year’s theme was “You are not alone” because the path to recovery is one meant to be traveled together.

Here are the top five takeaways from Riverside’s 2023 Recovery Celebration.

1. Your Past Doesn’t Define Your Future

Recovery teaches us that we can rebuild our lives, reconnect with our passions, and rediscover our purpose. Members of the recovery community shared their personal stories of transformation, proving that recovery is not just about overcoming substance use but also about embracing a brighter tomorrow.

Renowned Recovery Coach Lovelee Harvee reminded us that every day has the potential to be better than the last, with determination and the right support:


2. Utilize Peer Support and Other Available Resources

Our celebration highlighted the significance of a support network while trying to overcome addiction. Recovery isn’t a solo journey; it’s a collective effort. You are not alone.

Whether it’s connecting with a mentor who’s walked a similar path or joining group therapy sessions, there are resources to provide guidance, encouragement, and a sense of belonging. Recovery Coach Christina Lorenzo described the variety of supports available now that she wishes were accessible to her years ago – watch the clip below to learn more.


3. Substance Use and Morality are Entirely Unrelated

Addiction is not a moral failing. It’s a complex interplay of genetics, brain chemistry, and life experiences. Dr. Joseph Shrand, Riverside’s Chief Medical Officer, emphasized that understanding the science behind addiction is crucial in combating stigma and fostering empathy.


4. Embrace the Healing Power of Community

Our recovery experts emphasized the importance of community in living your best life. Contributing to society not only benefits others but also plays a vital role in maintaining sobriety.

When you remind someone else of their value and worth, you’re reinforcing your own sense of purpose. Gerard Touchette, Peer Engagement Wellness and Resource Coordinator, discussed how finding his community helped him stay on track with recovery and realize he’s not alone.


5. You Are Not Alone

Perhaps the most crucial takeaway from our event was the reminder that no one is alone in their recovery journey. Coming from a family member, friend, peer mentor, Recovery Coach, or anyone else, a helping hand is never out of reach.

Addiction can leave individuals feeling isolated, but events like these confirm that there is an entire community standing by their side.

Dr. Shrand concluded the celebration with the following message:


Our Recovery Celebration testified to the strength of those struggling with addiction and reminded us all that recovery is possible, support is abundant, and no one is ever alone on their healing journey. 

Click the link to watch our full Recovery Celebration.


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