STRAIGHT TALK: Centra Wellness program uses self-empowerment for addiction recovery

MANISTEE COUNTY — For those battling addiction, recovery is a feat often overcome with support from others in the community.

That’s what Self Management and Recovery Training (SMART Recovery) aims to accomplish, within both Manistee and Benzie counties, through the Centra Wellness Network.

Centra Wellness Network staff members, who work with the SMART Recovery Program, answered questions about the program for the News Advocate.

MNA: What is Smart Recovery? How does it serve to help those recover from addictions?

SMART: Self Management And Recovery Training is a self-empowering addiction recovery support group that teaches self-empowerment and self-reliance. It provides meetings that are educational, supportive and include open discussions, and encourages individuals to recover from addiction and alcohol abuse and live satisfying lives; as well as teaches techniques for self-directed change.

The SMART Recovery four-point program offers: tools and techniques in building and maintaining motivation; coping with urges; managing thoughts, feelings and behaviors; and living a balanced life.

MNA: How was this program formed? By whom?

SMART: SMART Recovery believes that each individual finds his own path to recovery. SMART Recovery grew out of the Rational Recovery movement in the mid ‘80s and was incorporated in 1992 as the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Self-Help Network. The ADASHN began operating under the Smart Recovery name in 1994, and established it as an Evidenced Based Practice.

At Centra Wellness, SMART Recovery groups were formed in response to the needs assessment in the communities we serve. The SMART Recovery program believes that each individual finds his own path to recovery. They are led by staff specially trained in the Smart Recovery model, typically a therapist, case manager or certified peer support specialist/recovery coach.

MNA: How can someone join the program?

SMART: Community groups are open to all community members. Information on specific meeting dates/times can be found by calling Centra Wellness Network at (877) 398-2013.

MNA: Does this program receive financial support?

SMART: Funding for SMART Recovery in the community is provided primarily through grants and donations.

MNA: Is there a target age group for the program?

SMART: SMART Recovery is intended for adults with addiction issues at this time in Manistee and Benzie counties.

MNA: Explain how the program works.

SMART:  “Discover the Power of Choice” is the essence of SMART Recovery. The SMART Recovery 4-Point Program employs a variety of tools and techniques to help individuals gain independence from addiction and addictive behaviors. Participants are encouraged to learn how to use each tool and to practice the tools and techniques as they progress, thereby achieving lifestyle balance and leading a fulfilling and healthy life.

MNA: How is this program unique from other programs at Centra Wellness?

SMART: One unique aspect of SMART Recovery is that the groups facilitated by Centra are available to individuals in the community as well as clients. As such clients who may be transitioning from Centra services are able to continue their engagement with SMART Recovery in the community groups available to the general public. SMART Recovery is also available in Manistee and Benzie county jails, and individuals can continue in their program within their community upon release.

MNA: Who operates the program?

SMART: Staff from Centra Wellness Network after specialized training.

MNA: How long does it take to complete the program/group?

SMART:  SMART Recovery is an open group and participants can choose to begin attending at any time. The length of time an individual may attend SMART Recovery typically ranges from months to years.



Posted by Ashlyn Korienek

Ashlyn is the cops & courts and city reporter for the Manistee News Advocate. You can reach her at (231) 398-3109 or

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