About the Foundation

A GLOBAL GRASSROOTS MOVEMENT

SHE RECOVERS® Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit public charity and a global grassroots movement serving more than 325,000 women, and non-binary individuals who identify with women’s communities, who are  in or seeking recovery from mental health issues, trauma, substance use and related life challenges.  We are all recovering from something—no one should have to recover alone.  

We connect women through our virtual offerings and in-person community networks, provide resources and support to help women develop their own holistic recovery patchworks, and empower them to thrive. 

Our Herstory

“There is no greater source of influence or inspiration than a woman in recovery. Our story is proof. – Dawn Nickel, PhD

SHE RECOVERS started in 2011 as a passion project initiated by two women in recovery from trauma, mental health issues, and substance use who were on their own journeys of personal and intergenerational healing. Dawn Nickel’s personal, academic, and professional experience related to women’s mental health and addiction, coupled with her daughter Taryn Strong’s creativity, entrepreneurial spirit, and deep connection to embodied healing modalities, set a firm foundation for the organization that became an official 501(c)(3) in 2020.

Our Journey

June 2011

CREATION OF THE SHE RECOVERS® PUBLIC FACEBOOK PAGE

Currently, we have grown to 270,000+ followers on the page and it ranks #2 out of 11 for similar recovery resources/ wellness influencer pages as per Facebook competitor reporting. We average 600-800 new organic page likes per month.

    June 2012

    LAUNCH OF SHE RECOVERS® WEBSITE

    Currently 42.1% of all website visitors find us through organic searches using their own search engines/key words. This outstanding metric tells us that women are actively seeking what we offer… and finding us. Visitor data suggests that not only are we funneling large numbers of new people to the site, almost all are visiting on the site for longer than the industry standard of 2 minutes (averaging 3, 4, 6 and 9 minutes on various of our web pages).

      November 2012

      INAUGURAL SHE RECOVERS® ON THE BEACH YOGA AND RECOVERY RETREAT IN MEXICO (TULUM)

      Sold out with 20 participants. The first of our very successful retreats – we have now hosted 40 retreats.

      November 2013

      FIRST SHE RECOVERS® ON THE BEACH YOGA AND RECOVERY RETREAT AT VILLA SOL Y LUNA (PLAYA SECRETO, MEXICO)

      This retreat was so popular that in 2014 we started hosting 2 Mexico retreats per year. In 2018, we moved to 4 Mexico retreats per year. We’ve hosted 18 Mexico retreats to date and all have sold out (22 participants at each retreat since 2013).

      August 2014

      INAUGURAL SHE RECOVERS® ON THE FARM YOGA AND RECOVERY RETREAT IN SALT SPRING ISLAND, BRITISH COLUMBIA

      The retreat sold out with 18 participants. Since that time, we have increased to hosting 3 retreats on Salt Spring Island each summer, each one sold out at 36 participants. (The retreat venue completed renovations to in part to accommodate the success of our retreats). We have hosted 14 Salt Spring retreats since 2014.

      May 2015

      SHE RECOVERS® ON THE BEACH YOGA AND RECOVERY RETREAT IN TEMPLETON, CALIFORNIA

      Sold out with 24 participants. This was just one of 5 retreats held in 2015.

      August 2016

      INAUGURAL SHE RECOVERS® TRAUMA-INFORMED YOGA 

      Presented by Taryn Strong at Hazelfest (Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation), Center City, Minnesota.

      2017 – 2018

      LAUNCH OF SHE RECOVERS® SACRED PAUSE ONE-DAY WORKSHOP TOUR IN SEATTLE

      Tour held subsequently in Victoria, Atlanta, San Francisco.
      Number of participants varied by venue (40 – 80) but all 2017-2018 workshops sold out, (total 260 attendees for the 2017 – 2018 Tour).

        March 2017

        LAUNCH OF SHE RECOVERS® COACH DESIGNATION PROGRAM (SRCD)

        Launched in partnership with the International Association of Professional Recovery Coaches. To date 110 women have graduated from the SRCD Program, with another 95 currently in training. We have graduated coaches in the United States, Canada, Australia, Columbia, Costa Rica, France, Greece, India, Philippines, United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom, and yet others still training from Mexico, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand and Saudi Arabia. We project 50-60 new coaches will register for our program in 2021.

        May 2017

        SHE RECOVERS® IN NYC

        Our first International Women’s Recovery Conference was hosted at the Conrad Hotel in Lower Manhattan. The event sold out months in advance at 500 registrants. Keynote speakers included Marianne Williamson, Glennon Doyle, Elizabeth Vargas and Gabrielle Bernstein. Our first SHE RECOVERS® Foundation Hope Award was presented to Jean McCarthy from the Unpickled Blog and Bubble Hour Podcast.

          August 2017

          THREE SHE RECOVERS® YOGA AND RECOVERY RETREATS IN BALI

          We sold out the first Bali retreat of 20 women in less than 24 hours so added two more, which also sold out. Our community has requested that we return to Bali and host more international retreats in the coming years.

          September 2017

          FIRST SHE RECOVERS® SHARING CIRCLE LAUNCHED IN SEATTLE

          By March 2020, there were 40 Sharing Circles across the world, including 24 in the United States, 5 in Canada, 2 in the UK, 1 in France, 1 in Australia. Prior to Covid-19 Pandemic, these Sharing Circles were hosted monthly, in-person by SHE RECOVERS® Coaches, averaging 10-20 attendees per Circle. These localized Sharing Circles (with their combined 1,400 members) will transition to SHE RECOVERS® Foundation Chapters starting in late 2020.

          January 2018

          CREATION OF SHE RECOVERS® TOGETHER PRIVATE FACEBOOK GROUP

          The group accumulated 600 members in its first six months and experienced very steady growth until March 2020, when we reached 2,000 members. The onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, and our immediate online response to it, caused a massive surge in numbers for this engaged community. We currently have 7,500 members and are gaining 100-150 weekly.

          April 2018

          Articles of Incorporation for the SHE RECOVERS® Foundation filed in Texas on April 6th.

          August 2018

          Launch of SHE RECOVERS® Trauma Informed Yoga ONLINE Membership

          This popular online group membership facilitated by Taryn Strong (Co-Founder of the Foundation) now boasts 225 members. Taryn also offer one free-Yoga class online outside of the membership, every Wednesday.

          September 2018

          SHE RECOVERS® IN LA 

          Our second International Women’s Recovery Conference as well as our first SHE RECOVERS® Foundation Gala Dinner held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles. The event sold out with 500 attendees. The second SHE RECOVERS® Hope Award was presented to Tarana Burke (Founder of the #MeToo Movement) and our first Legacy Award presented to the late Betty Ford for her work tackling stigma relate to women and addiction, and breast cancer.

            September 2018

            Launch of first SHE RECOVERS® Together Volunteer-Led Community Meetup Program in Southern California.

            Creating Connection

            We provide women from diverse backgrounds increased access to communities of recovery support both online and in person.

            Women view social support as paramount to their health and well-being and positive social support has been shown to provide momentum for improved wellness.

            Ensuring that the movement is inclusive of all women the Foundation focuses on priority populations such as young women with severe mental health issues, older women, and women from historically underserved populations including women of color, Indigenous women, LGBTQI+, women veterans, differently-abled women, and incarcerated women.

            In addition to certified SHE RECOVERS Coaches, SHE RECOVERS Dance Facilitators and SHE RECOVERS Trauma-Informed Yoga Instructors, vetted and trained volunteers play an integral role in creating welcoming environments within online and local community peer-based and peer-led recovery support groups and programs that create opportunities for connection.

            Providing Support

            We help women build recovery capital by introducing or providing recovery resources necessary to cultivate individualized and holistic recovery practices.

            A survey of the SHE RECOVERS online community conducted by the University of Pennsylvania in late 2018 found 45% of respondents identified “in-person pro-social events” as the service that they most highly desired to support their ongoing recovery.

            SHE RECOVERS Foundation has been hosting in-person transformational events for nearly eight years. At Foundation events, women are invited to strengthen their recovery capital by fostering relationships, engaging in introspection, sharing their experiences with one another, and learning how to practice radical self-care – all invaluable resources to building recovery capital. We are deeply committed to increasing event access for women locally as well as nationally by considering locations, cost, topics, and programming designed to meet the needs of diverse communities.

            Past and current events include:

            • SHE RECOVERS Annual National Foundation Gala
            • SHE RECOVERS International Trauma-Informed Retreats
            • Recovery-focused workshops
            • Sharing circles
            • Book clubs
            • Recovery recreation & outdoor activity groups

            We Envision

            A world where all women in or seeking recovery are celebrated, supported, and deemed essential to healthy communities.

            Our Mission

            To redefine recovery, inspire hope, end stigma and empower women in or seeking recovery from mental health issues, trauma, substance use and related life challenges to increase their recovery capital, heal themselves and help other women to do the same.

            Who We Are

            The SHE RECOVERS Foundation provides critical recovery support services within a recovery-oriented system of care (ROSC). We work collaboratively with individuals, organizations, and institutions whose missions align with ours because we know that collaboration maximizes impact and enhances outcomes for the individuals who engage with our organization. We also train professionals (therapists, social workers, nurses, physicians, coaches, and others) in our inclusive, woman-focused recovery ethos through a 12.5-hour certification program. 

            The SHE RECOVERS® Foundation is run by a board of directors/ strategic advisors and a staff team that authentically reflects and represents the experiences and perspectives of the community we serve. We all identify as women in recovery. Most of us have faced barriers due to stigma associated with mental health and addiction – 90% of us are in recovery from mental health issues, trauma or substance use, others identify as being in recovery from other or related life issues. Our 100+ volunteers – who are all in recovery – are the heart, soul and engine of our community.

            Our Core Values: 

            • Commitment to Mission
            • Integrity
            • Accessibility
            • Diversity
            • Collaboration
            • Trauma-Responsiveness
            • Impact-Focused

            Who We Serve

            Our community is made up of women in or seeking recovery. Approximately 90% are in the United States, many are of meager or modest means and all face barriers due to stigma associated with mental health conditions including substance use. Within our broader community, we also serve and support identity-based groups including Black, Indigenous & Women of Color, Spanish Speaking Women, LGBTQ+ Individuals, Women 18-35, Veterans & First Responders, Mothers of High Needs Children, Healthcare & Allied Professionals, & Legal Professionals. 

            Creating Resource-Rich Online Platforms

            There is an emerging evidence base revealing that over the past several years, women are beginning to reach out in greater numbers – particularly online – to connect with and receive support for various behavioral health issues. Positive interactions between members of online recovery communities that focus on positive change support the recovery process by helping participants to develop recovery capital. Individuals can also find encouragement, learn about resources, and get answers to specific behavioral-health-related questions online. Online platforms also provide a forum for women to share their success stories, which can help motivate other women to achieve similar goals.

            There are practical reasons why women seek out and benefit from building recovery capital in online groups. For example, engaging in online platforms allows women flexibility around “when” they access support, and also provides them in many instances with the ability to share information and feelings about their difficulties without having to disclose their personal identity

            In addition – online support is financially accessible as forums and Facebook groups typically do not charge a fee to participate. Women in rural and remote communities – as long as they have strong internet connections – can also greatly benefit from accessing online support when resources are limited locally.

            SHE RECOVERS online programs and spaces include:

            • SHE RECOVERS Together Online Zoom Gatherings
            • SHE RECOVERS Together Online Private Global Facebook Group
            • SHE RECOVERS Supports Online Private Global Facebook Groups
            • SHE RECOVERS Trauma-Informed Yoga
            • SHE RECOVERS Dance
            • SHE RECOVERS In the Rooms
            • SHE RECOVERS Podcast
            • The #MentalHealthMonday Recovery Education Series
            • Online Retreats

            Our Services & Impact

            Over the past twelve years, we have connected thousands of women to one another, supported their healing journeys through our online mutual support groups, recovery education platforms and resources, twice-daily online gatherings, therapeutic movement offerings (trauma-informed yoga and dance), identity-based support groups and gatherings, volunteer training, and in-person Sharing Circles (over twenty across the United States, Canada and overseas). 

            In 2022 alone, we:

            • Enabled 114,500 women access SHE RECOVERS trusted resources for trauma, mental health, and substance use recovery
            • Provided 39,000 women platforms on which to connect, support, and empower one another.
            • Provided 6,900 identity-based women, including Black, Indigenous & Women of Color, LGBTQ+, veterans, and healthcare professionals, with supportive groups and gatherings in which to heal
            • Delivered 65,300 minutes of professionally facilitated live group support and recovery education sessions (including #MentalHealthMonday education sessions) 
            • Trained 222 SHE RECOVERS Certified Professionals and Volunteers

            Our Outcomes

            Through these offerings we are substantially achieving our desired outcomes of connecting, supporting and empowering women in recovery. For example, in a recent study conducted with women who attend our online gatherings, 70% of community members claimed improved mental health, 75% claimed improved self-awareness and coping ability, and 65% identified that attending the gatherings had decreased the amount of stigma they feel related to being in recovery.

            Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania (Curtis et al., 2019) concluded that SHE RECOVERS acts as a vital tool for providing support to “marginalized, disenfranchised, and specialized communities in response to the unique and varied needs of such targeted populations—women in recovery in this instance.” Further, the researchers identified as a key strength, our ability to “diversify and tailor offerings of support for a variety of disorders, concerns, and illnesses.” SHE RECOVERS is currently the focus of another outcomes study being conducted by researchers at Canisius College (Buffalo, NY).

            Beyond formal research studies, we know that our approach works because we regularly seek and receive feedback from our community members and that feedback has always been overwhelmingly positive. That women in our community are regularly referred to us by clinicians and respected recovery treatment programs is also strong evidence that our approach is effective.

            When Women Heal, Families & Communities Do Too

            Research has confirmed that recovery-oriented systems of care and ongoing, consistent, and accessible recovery supports help people with mental health issues and substance use disorders manage their conditions more effectively and with greater success. The Intentions & Guiding Principles that SHE RECOVERS was founded upon has attracted women from all walks of life in or seeking recovery from something that is blocking them from living their best life.

            Many of these women found healing that once eluded them.

            SHE RECOVERS, dedicated to increasing access to its programs, offers certifications to women who want to use their life experience to coach and mentor those seeking peer-support and peer-led programming to bolster their recovery. We are building capacity to support women within a recovery-oriented system of care by training volunteers to become recovery coaches and trauma-informed yoga instructors, and healing dance modality instructors. SHE RECOVERS current Training and Certifications include:

            • SHE RECOVERS Coach Designation
            • SHE RECOVERS Trauma-Informed Yoga Teacher Training
            • SHE RECOVERS Dance Facilitator Designation

            Diversity Matters to Us

            SHE RECOVERS welcomes and celebrates all pathways and patchworks of recovery, all races, sexual orientations, bodies, differences of life situations, backgrounds and abilities, and we encourage all to share their cultural experiences and identities to enrich our community. While we actively work to increase diversity on our team, our current leadership (board and staff) increasingly reflects our community in terms of being differently abled and body sized, LGBTQ+, BIWOC, Spanish speaking. 

            We believe DEI must go far beyond simply being anti-discriminatory. To that end, we:

            • Collaborate with Trusted Advisors to develop, implement, and sustain comprehensive approaches to integrate culturally and linguistically responsive programming, policies and practices across all aspects of the organization
            • Prioritize the needs of folks who have been pushed to the margins of society such as LGBTQ+ folks and women of color and provide identity-based populations with dedicated spaces and support
            • Offer sliding scale pricing and financial empowerment opportunities for many of our offerings

            Importantly, we are committed to “doing our own individual work in order to create & hold healing spaces for everyone”, recognizing our own privilege and leveraging it to amplify the voices and work of those who are not afforded the same advantages. 

            What We Do Matters

            “We know that when women heal, families heal, and communities do too.” Dawn Nickel, PhD

            The imperative to increase support and resources for women in or seeking recovery has never been stronger. Women are nearly twice as likely as men to be diagnosed with depression; anxiety disorders affect about 40% of US women. According to a 2021 study, 12.4 million women ages 18 and older developed an alcohol use disorder in the year previous (NIAA, 2021). Drinking and binge drinking are increasing among women, who already have a higher risk of developing alcohol-related problems than men (NIAAA, 2023). Since 1999 opioid overdose deaths have increased at a faster pace in women than men – 1,608% for women versus 1,076% for men (NSC, 2021). 

            The research is clear – expansion of gender-specific, diverse and integrated recovery supports is needed to ease the impact of barriers and obstacles to long-term recovery facing women. SHE RECOVERS is uniquely positioned to provide such support. 

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