About the Foundation
A GLOBAL GRASSROOTS MOVEMENT
The SHE RECOVERS FOUNDATION is a 501(c)(3) non-profit public charity with a growing and evolving community currently consisting of more than 325,000 women in or seeking recovery from substance use disorders, other behavioral health issues and/or life challenges.
This lifeline organization connects women through its virtual platforms and in-person community networks, provides resources and supports women to develop their own holistic recovery patchworks, and empowers them to thrive and share their successes. All efforts are designed to end the stigma and shame often associated with recovery so that more women may heal and grow.
With a special focus on research, the SHE RECOVERS Foundation can also establish a more robust evidence base related to the efficacy of non-traditional recovery pathways.
SHE RECOVERS Foundation stated purpose is to connect, support and empower women in or seeking recovery.
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 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.
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
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
- SHE RECOVERS Mental Health Monday Educational Series
- Online Retreats
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 and 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
A SHE RECOVERS Dance Facilitator Designation is also under consideration.
We reduce the stigma related to women and recovery through public awareness programs and education of key policymakers, stakeholders and the general public and contribute to a growing evidence base that shows the efficacy of non-traditional recovery practices.
RAISING PUBLIC AWARENESS THROUGH ADVOCACY AND EDUCATION
The stigma associated with asking for help to recover – not just from substance use disorders – but from other mental health issues like anxiety or depression or other life challenges caused by trauma, racism, sexual, emotional or physical abuse is fueling a North American health crisis.
The Foundation strongly believes that recovery becomes more accessible and acceptable in a community when there is a direct personal connection. Volunteers will serve as local advocates to help combat negative public attitudes, educate policymakers and improve support for recovery in the community. Local volunteers can raise public awareness and advocate for increased recovery services much more effectively than a national campaign, by serving as a local face for recovery, with real stories and examples of recovery success and challenges.
Local volunteers in partnership with the Foundation will work to increase public awareness in the community at large about the issues and challenges facing women in recovery. These awareness activities will serve not only to increase the amount and accuracy of recovery information available to the public, but will also personalize the issue for the general public by putting a face and an individual story on the larger issue of recovery, thus humanizing the issue and decreasing the stigma associated with recovery.
UNLOCKING TRANSFORMATIONAL OUTCOMES
The Foundation is deeply committed to advancing research on modalities yielding transformational outcomes for women in recovery. Through collaborative relationships with reputable behavioral health and recovery research institutions and program evaluators, the Foundation will collect data to support program development, activities, and resources for the women we serve.
The imperative to increase support and resources for women in or seeking recovery from substance use disorders and other behavioral health issues has never been stronger.
Uncertainty and isolation during the current pandemic, coupled with trauma related to racial injustice, has thrown our world into a mental health crisis. Increasing levels of anxiety and depression are being reported, and the risk of suicide is rising proportionately. Domestic violence is increasing at alarming rates. Those recovering from substance use disorders are extremely vulnerable to relapse right now and eating disorders and binge eating are being ignited in individuals facing so much uncertainty.
ADDRESSING WOMEN’S UNIQUE BEHAVIORAL HEALTH NEEDS
- Drinking and binge drinking are increasing among women, who already have a higher risk of developing alcohol-related problems than men (NIAAA, 2017).
- Women are at highest risk for developing a substance use disorder between the ages of 18-44 which largely coincides with their reproductive years.
- Women are nearly twice as likely as men to be diagnosed with depression.
- Borderline Personality Disorder strikes young women more than any other demographic (NIMH, 2020).
- At least one in five women suffer rape or attempted rape in their lifetime (WHO, 2020).
- Twice as many women are affected by eating disorders as men (NEDA, 2020).
- Women tend to experience more concurrent mental health disorders. Depression might be accompanied by anxiety, agoraphobia (feeling unsafe), panic disorders, somatoform disorders (symptoms of physical illness or pain that cannot be fully diagnosed), and post-traumatic stress disorder.
- Between 1999 and 2015 the rate of deaths from prescription opioid overdoses increased 471 percent among women (CDC 2017).
- About 25 percent of young women have engaged in self-injurious behavior – more than twice the rate of young men.
SHE RECOVERS provides life-saving support to women at a time where few resources are dedicated to behavioral health. Social support in particular is positively linked to health and well-being across the general population and improved overall wellness leads to decreased relapses related to behavioral health issues. As a public charity, SHE RECOVERS is positioned to provide innovative and critically-needed social support.
When one woman heals she can heal the world
There is no greater power or influence than a woman in recovery. Our story is proof.
The Foundation is a natural outgrowth of the success of the SHE RECOVERS passion project, initiated by a recovering mother and her daughter in 2011. What started out as a Facebook page has now become an online global movement of women in or seeking recovery from substance use disorders, other behavioral health issues, and/or life challenges. Some of the Foundation’s accomplishments include:
- The SHE RECOVERS Facebook Page, created in June 2011, now has over 271,000 followers
- The SHE RECOVERS Instagram Account, created in April 2019, has over 16,000 followers
- 2,200 women have been provided in-person transformational experiences at SHE RECOVERS retreats, conferences and workshops since 2012
- 100 women have been trained and certified as SHE RECOVERS Recovery Coaches since 2017, with an additional 100 currently in training
- The SHE RECOVERS Together Private Facebook Group was formed in January 2018 and now has 4,500 members. Members find encouragement, learn about novel resources and healing modalities, share success stories, and most importantly build an accessible network of support. The Group continues to grow by approximately 100 women per week
- 33 SHE RECOVERS Sharing Circles have been formed, primarily in cities across the United States and Canada but also in Paris, London and Sydney, Australia. The Circles are held in person monthly and facilitated by SHE RECOVERS Coaches. Average attendance at each Circle is between 10-20 women.
- 25 women have been trained as SHE RECOVERS Trauma Informed Yoga Instructors since October 2019
- In March 2020 SHE RECOVERS launched Together Online Zoom Gatherings – twice daily meetings. Between 120 and 160 women attend these support calls each day
- The SHE RECOVERS Podcast has had 150,000 downloads since it launched nearly weekly episodes in 2019
- SHE RECOVERS website averages 8,000 new users per month