What makes a city particularly appealing for recovering addicts? Some say it’s high numbers of weekly AA/NA meetings; others say it’s a low percentage of drug and alcohol abuse. While both are certainly valuable components of sober living, sustained sobriety can often hinge on a city’s available community resources.
While plenty of cities provide community support and programs centering on sobriety, seven U.S. cities stand out from the rest, and a few might surprise you. If you’re looking for a recovery-friendly place to call home, you’ll definitely want to keep these American cities in mind:
1. Yakima, WA
Yakima has pulled off what some might consider impossible; they’ve come together politically, economically, and personally to champion sobriety. Yakima’s treatment and prevention providers equally share funding, ensuring no recovery program is ever forced out of business. What’s more, Yakima’s Drug Free Communities Coalition successfully decreased drug abuse by almost half in five years.
2. Delray Beach, FL
Delray Beach is home to one of the most thriving recovery communities in the nation. Since the town is rather small, recovering addicts are able to form lasting and valuable friendships. People are commonly seen reading the “Big Book” and sipping coffee around town. Delray Beach also offers a large number of affordable halfway houses, boasting more than 1,200 beds in the city.
Photo via marriottdelraybeach.com
3. Harlem, NY
Record numbers of teenagers are struggling with addiction and chronic relapse, making community resources more important than ever. In response, Harlem established academies that combine schools and community resources. What makes this program especially impressive is that it extends into the afternoon and evening, giving kids a safe and sober place to spend time.
Harlem’s model led to the creation of the largest school-community prevention system in the country: Communities in Schools
Photo via Graffiti Hall of Fame
4. Atlanta, GA
Atlanta is determined to keep its children drug free. Following Harlem’s lead, Atlanta launched the first CIS community outside of Harlem. The Atlanta CIS also caters to parents. In fact, one CIS parent group developed PRIDE Survey
, which tracks research for parents, monitors substance abuse, and pushes for prevention in schools.
Photo via history.com / corbis
5. San Diego, CA
San Diego boasts an impressive community of halfway houses and clubs for the newly sober. The city has also received praise for the development of Drug Free Communities in neighborhoods throughout the county, along with the San Diego Second Chance program that creates opportunities for sober living.
6. Nashville, TN
Nashville is proud of its commitment to sober living. Not only does the city have the highest number of support clubs and gatherings, it also has one of the lowest alcohol consumption rates in the nation. Music city also holds a number of sober living celebrations throughout the year. Nashville’s recovery community regularly enjoys innovative activities like social mixers, outdoor events, and dinner parties.
Photo via williamrush.org
7. Boston, MA
Boston’s Mayor Martin J. Walsh recently announced
that his administration is ready to bring “new support to the recovery community.” With thousands of Boston addicts being denied access to support, Mayor Walsh forged a relationship with the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation
Together, they will evaluate the Boston recovery community’s current status and immediate needs. Once determined, multiple new and cutting-edge sober living initiatives will be launched around the city.
Photo via bostinno
Top Image Credit: Walter Smith/Flickr