Addiction Recovery and Employment: Career Counselling as a Community Service

Stenberg College Blog 0 Comments

Over the shoulder view, of a business man sit on a couch talking to his psychiatrist

Recovering from a substance addiction can sometimes be a long, difficult road. Finding and keeping employment can seem overwhelming to a person in recovery, but thankfully, those pursuing a mental health and addictions career are there to lend a hand.

Let’s take a look at how this rewarding career plays a role in helping people in recovery explore their vocational interests and sustain meaningful employment.

Employment Programs

One of the ways people with a mental health and addictions diploma can provide a rewarding service is by designing employment programs specifically aimed at giving recovering addicts the foundation they need to re-integrate themselves into the labor market. These programs may include such things as:

Life Skills Workshops

Teaching valuable life skills such as managing anger, building self-esteem and handling finances, help participants adapt to a new way of life in recovery that increases both their enjoyment of life, and their ability to find and maintain a job.

Vocational Assessments

People in recovery who are newly returning to the workforce may have a tough time deciding which field their skills are best be applied to. Assessments that aim at uncovering transferable skills and personality dimensions are very useful tools in helping them decide on a career or educational path that best suits them.

Job Search Skills Training

In considering job placement, it’s important to cover such bases as updating resumes and cover letters, researching the job market, job interview skills and networking.

Educating Employers

Some drug & alcohol rehabilitation centers employ recovering addicts almost exclusively, as they are able to effectively carry the message of recovery to newer clients with less sobriety time and provide a level of understanding that may not be found elsewhere. Reasons why people in recovery make great employees in any field also include:

  • They are highly motivated to work hard because employment provides them a healthy structure for getting their lives on track.
  • They are loyal and committed to employers who are willing to give them a chance to achieve personal and financial stability.

Providing Aftercare

Ongoing support is a crucial element to providing people in recovery with a successful employment game plan. Once they attain a job, further development of their personal and professional skills will help deal with the potential pressure of getting accustomed to workforce re-integration.

Mental health and addictions training prepares you to provide follow-up support in a variety of ways, such as:

  • One-on-one counseling to discuss both personal and employment gains or issues
  • Develop a flexible plan of action together in the case of job termination
  • Offer resources for supplemental job training, such as helping the recovering individual enroll in night classes
  • Provide time management training to help balance a healthy work and personal schedule

What do you think would be the most rewarding aspects of this career for you?

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