1. They are all in bad neighborhoods

While sober living homes can range in locations usually matching an individuals budget, they are not all in bad neighborhoods. Some do resemble the dark and dilapidated areas addicts turn to when they are getting high but the majority are in stable and comfortable areas. People may be surprised when driving through nicer communities in their local town to learn that the well kept home down the street actually houses a group of men or women looking to better their lives.

  1. The homes are run down and poorly kept

This goes hand-in-hand with the idea that the homes are in questionable neighborhoods. The aim of any reputable sober living home is to provide the same or better quality and comfort than the addict had at home. Imagine trying to begin a new chapter in your life and better yourself only to call a place home that resembles the condemned house that you used to pick up your drugs at. For this reason and many more, sober living homes make it a special point to provide homes with amenities and creature comforts found in higher end homes today. It is not uncommon to be greeted by hardwood floors, Travertine tile, marble counter tops, and plush leather furnishings.

  1. Sober Living is not necessary after treatment

On the contrary, sober living is one of the few ways to set up an individual in recovery for success. It is still up to the individual to do the leg work but sober living homes provide the stable and structured environment one needs to successfully transition back into their day-to-day life. While a 30, 60, or 90 inpatient program would represent the triage and emergency services a patient would receive after a horrible accident. Sober living is akin to the follow up visits and continuing care after a patient has been stabilized. A sober living home allows men and women who are still in a critical early point of recovery to rejoin life while still having the accountability needed for long term success.

  1. They are unregulated

Many people believe that sober living homes are unregulated, or even worse, fraudulent money making schemes. While a simple Google search can reveal the dark side of “sober living homes”, it is important to remember that the true facilities are operating to help those suffering from addiction. Yes, they are businesses and need to make a profit to continue to help the future recovering alcoholics and addicts, but they do not do so at the sake of their current clients. Sober living homes, depending upon the state they lie in, are subject to regulation through zoning laws, state housing departments, state and municipal healthcare regulations and regulation specific to sober living communities and homes. While it would be nice to say every home is operating for benevolent reasons, it is important to research the home your loved one chooses to continue their journey in sobriety. The best place to start is the inpatient treatment facility your loved one is currently undergoing treatment at; the counselors and staff will know which places have good or poor reputations.

  1. They are havens for continued drug use.

Like most things in life you get what you pay for. If it is cheap, it is cheap for a reason. A sober living home is exactly that; a home where each of clients is guaranteed to be able to come home and not be tempted by the same environment they had just left. Each home has their own rules for what happens in the event of relapse and be sure to discuss this with the director of the home. Rules can vary from speaking with their counselor to ensure it does not happen again, to being asked to leave the home temporarily until the individual is able to test clean of all drugs, to asking any individual to leave the home in the event of any drug use.  Companies that have been in business even for a short time will have seen cases of relapse and will have plans to handle each case accordingly.

More importantly, if a sober living has a good reputation, it enjoys it for a reason. They have built it over time and through the ability to foster success stories. They work with people from all socioeconomic backgrounds in the toughest and most mentally challenging moments of their lives to show them a better way to live. One of the reason they are so successful is because the best homes are truly that, a safe home for your loved one.

The next section of Camelback Recovery’s educational piece, the Consumer Awareness Guide, is in the works. Here are the 5 Costly Misconceptions of Sober Living Homes:

  1. A structured environment is not necessary at this stage of recovery.
  2. I (Me, Myself, and I) will know when I am ready to move out of the sober living home.
  3. All sober living homes are the same.
  4. The highest priced homes with all of the bells and whistles are the best.
  5. Price is the only consideration when choosing a sober living home.

Keep your eye out for the full version of this section.

“Sojourn” by Camelback, the new 16-bed sober living community, is now open.  Exclusively for men, this sprawling property offers the finest in comfort and luxury amenities. We have an amazing outdoor BBQ and fireplace right around the corner from our crystal clear swimming pool. We have 4 patio areas to choose from, green grass for outdoor sports, and spacious bedrooms. This will be your home away from home. Come home to Sojourn. Call Tim Westbrook for details 602.751.4866.

Find additional pictures at

Camelback Recovery is excited to announce that we will be opening a beautiful sober living residence for women towards the end of August. The women will enjoy the same pampering amenities that Camelback has been known for during the last two plus years.  Our philosophy is to provide a nurturing environment that provides each individual with a safe and healthy home to support them in their early recovery work.  The foundation of our recovery community is based upon the 12 Steps.  The home is centrally located in the picturesque community of Arcadia (Phoenix/Scottsdale, Arizona).  Our location provides a close proximity to gyms, yoga studios, healthy restaurants, hiking paths and shopping malls.  Camelback Recovery has been a leader in the sober living community by offering their residents a luxurious home away from home during their stay.  For more information, contact Tim Westbrook at 602.751.4866 or

Camelback Sober Living updates:

  • We sent out an email a while back stating that we were becoming a coed program. At this time, we are exclusively serving me. The plan is to open a female home in the near future. Stay tuned!
  • The all-inclusive monthly rate is $1500. If food is valued at $600 per month, which is a conservative number, then the monthly rate without food is $900. $900 per month translates to $203 per week!

  • Gourmet meals are served five nights per week

  • Pre-made breakfasts are available daily. Pre-made breakfasts are typically made with ground turkey, egg whites, onions and peppers, and topped with Sriracha. An avocado is a tasty addition to this healthy, high-protein meal.

  • Pre-made salad mix is available for daily lunches. Salad mix typically includes mixed greens, sweet peppers, onions, mushrooms, blueberries, and sunflower seeds. Seasoned, shredded chicken is portioned out and in the refrigerator ready to add to the salad for a tasty lunchtime meal. 

  • There is ALWAYS an abundance of healthy food at Camelback Sober Living!

  • Lastly, all men in our home are attending IOP together. This makes our program an excellent step-down or alternative to inpatient treatment.

Camelback Sober Living will have a booth at the Art of Recovery, which is this Saturday September 19th at the Phoenix Convention Center. Hope to see you there!

Be grateful for where you are now.

“It doesn’t take as much faith to believe that everything happens for a reason as it does to embrace the belief that I am who and where I am now, today, for a reason – even if I don’t know what that reason is and even if I don’t particularly like who or where I am today,” a friend said to me.

“When I can take that in, my dissatisfaction and negativity disappear, and I can proceed calmly and gratefully with my life. To me,” he said, “that’s what spirituality is all about.”

Faith and hope aren’t just for the future. Try using them on today.

Could it be that you’re who you are and where you are now for a reason? Thank God for your life, exactly as it is, right now.

God, give me enough faith to believe in today.

I agree with this 1000%! Everything happens for a reason and everything happens exactly the way it’s supposed to. There are no coincidences. A gentleman moved into our sober living home yesterday, and it turns out that his girlfriend was the listing agent for the office that I leased several years ago. I was at the sober living house today, and the owner of the office building that I leased road by on his bike. I have not seen him in years. I’m not sure what that means, or if it even means anything. I leased out one of my homes to a couple of women a few years ago, and it turned out that they were in recovery. Shortly after that they turned my home into a sober living home for women. That was about the same time that I was getting out of the vacation rental business and I was trying to figure out what I was going to do next with my life. That is what opened up my eyes to the possibility of getting into the sober living business. Now I own my own recovery business. I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason and there are no coincidences. I am grateful that I have the faith that everything works out the way it’s supposed to.

This post discusses the scenario of a guy that requires a risk assessment along with the reasoning behind why he requires a risk assessment. In the last section of the paper, the writer outlines how he would assess the client.


Jay is a 56-year-old Caucasian man. Jay is slightly underweight and 6’4”. Jay has trouble maintaining eye contact. Jay also has a 5-year-old boy and a 10-year-old boy. Jay went to treatment for his alcoholism six months ago. He has since relapsed and his wife, Sue, has asked for separation. Sue has also filed a restraining order against Jay. Since Sue has filed a restraining order against him, Jay has only been able to see his kids on a limited basis. Further, Jay and his wife have burned through a significant portion of their retirement, as Jay has been unemployed for over a year. Jay was terminated due to his excessive alcohol abuse. His kids are his world and not being able to see them has caused him to go into a severe depression. Being unemployed and not having a purpose is making matters worse. Further, his close friends and most of the other people in his life want nothing to do with him until he can get his alcoholism under control. He admits to having frequent thoughts of wishing he were not alive. However, he denies having thoughts of actual suicide.

For the past several weeks, Jay has been living by himself in an apartment. He spends most of his time in isolation. He has gone to a few AA meetings. However, he is not willing to surrender to the program. Jay is only able to get a few days of sobriety at a time. He does not want to go back to treatment, because that will mean that he will not get to see his kids. However, Jay would desperately like to get back together with Sue. He desperately wants to be back living with and seeing his kids on a daily basis.

If Jay wants his wife and kids back, he needs to get and stay sober. The last treatment center he went to was across the country and most of the other patients were Heroin addicts in their twenties. Jay could not relate to these kids and he felt that the treatment was ineffective. He blames his relapse on the treatment center. Plus, treatment is a significant expense and he and his wife have already burned through a significant amount of their savings. Another option for Jay is sober living. However, Jay does not want to follow the rules and policies associated with the sober living home that he has looked at. He is open to sober living on his own terms. He wants his own room, he wants to come and go as he pleases, and does not want to be bound by rules. In other words, he wants his own apartment, which is a setup for failure.

Selection and Deselection Criteria

The screening questions serve many purposes and are vital to forming an appropriate group. When it comes to the selection of members of a group, “Deselection criteria” is normally emphasized more than selection criteria (Delucia, 2006). The goal of the screening process is to identify group members whose needs and goals line up with the goals of the group (Corey, Corey, & Corey, 2010). Another goal of the screening process is to determine if a particular individual should be included in this particular group at this particular time with this particular group leader (Corey, Corey, & Corey, 2010).

With the goals of the screening process in mind, the writer developed sixteen questions. First, personal information is gathered. Second, the writer wants confirmation that the individual has admitted that he is a substance abuse addict along with his drug of choice(s). Next, the writer wants confirmation that the individual is planning to stay clean and sober. It is important that group members want recovery. If they do not want recovery, then this is not the right group for them at this moment in time. Additionally, does the individual have any mental health conditions? If they do have mental health conditions, which do they have? Mental health disorders are common amongst substance abuse addicts and it will be important for the group facilitator to know what he is dealing with. The group facilitator also needs to know if an individual is suicidal, homicidal, experiences episodes of rage, or has experienced recent trauma. If so, he is probably not a good fit for this group (Corey, Corey, & Corey, 2010). He needs a different level of care than can be provided at the group level. Next, is he in the midst of an extreme crisis? If he is in the midst of an extreme crisis, group counseling is probably not a good fit for him at this very moment in time (Corey, Corey, & Corey, 2010). Next, is he highly paranoid or have an extreme case of anxiety? A person with anxiety or extreme paranoia might not be a good fit for a group-counseling environment (Corey, Corey, & Corey, 2010). The group facilitator will want to know if an individual has been to treatment for his substance condition. If so, which treatment center? How long was he in treatment? And what was his discharge date? This information will tell more about the social class of the individual, what kind of treatment he was provided, and how severe his substance condition is. Is he in a transitional sober living environment or is he planning on moving into a sober living environment? This will tell if he is in a different environment than he was in when he was actively in his addiction. Depending upon which sober living home he is in, the other members of the household will be in recovery, there will be drug testing, and there will be rules and policies, which need to be followed. If a person is in a transitional sober living home, it usually means that he is more willing to go outside of his comfort zone to change his life. Living in a sober living home is an indication that he is taking the next step towards lifelong recovery. Is he willing to commit to sixteen weeks? The individual must commit to at least sixteen weeks with the group. Sixteen weeks is long enough for the members to build trust and for significant behavioral changes to take place (Corey, Corey, & Corey, 2010). The individual must be open, willing, and committed to doing homework when assigned. Work outside of the group is imperative to the group counseling process. Is a person willing to explore difficult issues in his life and is he willing to learn new techniques to handle these situations? This is a gauge of a person’s willingness. Is the individual willing to support other members of the group? This is a group and the members must be supportive of each other to achieve the best possible outcome.

The final step of the screening process will be a one-on-one interview with one of the group counselors. Actually having a conversation with each potential group member is the best way to dig deeper on some of the screening questions, connect, and determine whether or not he might be a good fit for the group.

Group Selection

The group approach to counseling with adults with a substance condition has been proven to be not only cost-effective, but also powerful and successful. The group approach gives members of the group an experience that cannot be replicated by individual counseling. One reason why group counseling is so effective is because of therapeutic forces, like the instillation of hope, altruism, universality, and group cohesiveness. Another reason why group modalities are effective is due to their success in treating conditions that are associated with addiction, like bipolar, depression, and anxiety. (Treatment, 2005

Population and Participant Number

The people considered as members for this group will include adults, male or female, with a substance condition. The only requirement for membership will be that the individuals are over the age of 18 and they have a substance condition. The type of individuals that will be attracted to this group will be of the middle to upper socioeconomic status, above average intelligence, and most will have at least some college education. For an ongoing group, eight members might be ideal. (Corey, Corey, & Corey, 2010). However, because it is an open group and members are welcome to join at anytime, the number of people in the group will range from six to ten at any given time.