There is an exciting addiction recovery opportunity for people in Gilbert, Arizona that other treatment centers could learn a lot from. Welcome Home Ranch, a John Volken Academy, is a long-term recovery program that focuses on work therapy to rehabilitate and reintegrate individuals into healthy, contributing members of society. There are three John Volken Academies, one in Seattle, one in Vancouver B.C., and one here in the beautiful Arizona desert. These programs prepare people to sustain recovery, fostering community and skills over time that will endure and support them into their future. These rehabilitation programs and others that incorporate long-term treatment plans and engaging methods for developing coping skills are paramount to addiction recovery.

How a Support System Can Help Maintain Recovery

Research and professionals in the field maintain that an individual’s support system of loved ones is one of the most critical elements of recovery from addiction. When people feel loved, accepted, purposeful, and truly a part of a community, they are much less likely to turn to substance abuse. At Welcome Home Ranch, students collaborate and work together to accomplish their tasks. Students with seniority mentor the newer students, teaching them how to perform their tasks. Some students cook the food for everyone, while others do maintenance, tend to horses, and cultivate crops. They all work together to sustain life on the ranch and form very close bonds in the process.

While many treatment programs for addiction encourage clients to develop and strengthen their relationships with loved ones, this is not always available to everyone. An individual may have been raised in the foster care system and never felt close or bonded to any family. Perhaps others in their family also suffer from addiction and are not good influences. Someone may have lost their close family to tragedy or become irrevocably estranged from loved ones. At Welcome Home Ranch, every person has the opportunity to form family-like bonds with the others in recovery. This creates a sense of belonging and comfort that they may never have had before.

Work Therapy: Beneficial to Long-Term Recovery

Structured primarily around work therapy, students at Welcome Home Ranch and the other John Volken Academies, spend much of their time performing their assigned work tasks. Through the work they do, they gain a sense of agency and witness their own positive impact on community. The strict routine helps them to recondition their habits and learn how slow progress can be gratifying as they move away from patterns of instant gratification. Developing occupational skills harbors feelings of self-worth and purpose. The trade skills students learn at the ranch are valuable to society and create a foundation for financial stability and success.

The Welcome Home Ranch program lasts for two years, which is another aspect that makes the program special. Studies show that longer treatment programs and periods of rehabilitation are more successful than shorter ones. It takes time for people to fully heal and foster the values and behavioral patterns necessary to sustain recovery. Unfortunately, treatment programs for addiction can be very expensive even after insurance, which keeps many people from seeking the length of treatment that they need. At Welcome Home Ranch, a single fee of 5,000 dollars is all that is required.

How Programs like Welcome Home Ranch Help

Perhaps more treatment models alike to the John Volken Academies should be initiated. Intake for these programs is limited of course, due to their length and low cost, but more addiction recovery efforts can strive for similar achievement.
Programs that distinctly foster community and supply engaging methods for developing coping skills are necessary in addiction recovery. Additionally, long-term treatment programs need to be made more prominent and accessible. Some treatment centers have a 90-day, or longer, treatment option which is a great start. It can be expensive, and unfortunately it is improbable for every facility to raise enough money for cost-free treatment. More needs to be done to ensure that proper treatment is affordable, but in the meantime, any amount of payment is worth getting your life back