Volunteering in Recovery: Why You Should Do It

Going through the addiction treatment process is a difficult, but life changing process and with it there are a number of lifestyle changes that need to be made.

Of course, firstly, there’s giving up a substance and going sober. So, if you’re an alcoholic, no more alcohol. But when going through an alcohol detox, you’ll also find that you need to make positive changes to your day-to-day, from the likes of exercising daily, to finding new activities and support networks.

Volunteering is often an activity advised by therapists and for a number of reasons too. 

So, if you are going through rehabilitation treatment and entering recovery, here’s why volunteering could be the right move for you…

It gets you back on the working ladder

Firstly, it’s likely you will have had to give up work to fully focus on your treatment. That can often lead to nerves about re-entering the working environment, particularly if the stresses of your day job was one of the biggest factors in suffering from addiction in the first place.

Volunteering offers a no-pressure reentry to working, whether that be doing a few hours in a charity shop each week, or heading out into the countryside litter picking or taking care of the environment. It’s all about your commitment to the role, and it will help you understand whether you’re ready to reenter the world of work just yet.

You’ll meet new people

Volunteering is great for meeting new people and finding a new circle of friends. Often when entering recovery, it’s about leaving your old life behind and that can leave you with a friendship shaped hole in your life.

Volunteering allows you to meet like minded people who care about the same things. Many may have even been through similar circumstances to you, and they can provide a great support network to help maintain your sobriety. Friendships made in volunteering really can last a lifetime.

You can fill your time doing something you’re passionate about

There are volunteering roles available for all manner of activities and passions. If you’re a lover of sport, you could volunteer at your local amateur club. If you love hiking, you could be a tour guide. Perhaps you’re an animal lover and want to volunteer to walk dogs at a dog’s home. The opportunities really are endless.

What you’ll typically find when coming out of rehab is that you have a lot of free time that would usually be spent in the pub drinking or in the casino gambling. Fill that time productively by doing something you’re passionate about. It’ll change your life for the better.

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