A Reprieve for Men is a home – a place to make real connections – a place to belong – a brotherhood. We’re also a place to have fun, eat great food and where recovery is happening every day.
At A Reprieve for Men, men are engaged in a wide variety of activities such as team sports including softball, basketball, volleyball, etc. Each resident gets a recreation package at a state-of the-art facility. There is a music room where residents and staff can be found “jamming out” and multiple rocking chairs on a porch where residents and even alumni are invited to come and hang out together. During the holidays we have cookouts.
There is a surrender wall to serve as a powerful visual reminder of the things residents are willing to give up for their sobriety. We aim to build self-confidence and help our young men learn to draw from their inner strength and the strength of the brotherhood. We create specific activities around dealing with anger in healthy ways. For many men anger is the outward expression of hurt and disappointment. Our activities help them to recognize this and learn how to work through their anger and overcome it.
Life skills are key components of the program and guys find work or get reconnected to school to finish their education. Men at A Reprieve often find jobs through the connections they make in the community over the years. There are rites of passage and ceremonies that bond men together in common goals and common fun. These connections run deep – once men are connected to A Reprieve they become family forever.
Typical day at A Reprieve
Wake Up – The day at A Reprieve for Men begins with residents completing household chores and cooking breakfast together.
Daily Meditation – Residents of A Reprieve practice 30 minutes of guided Mindfulness meditation each morning. This practice allows the resident to begin their day by confronting, rather than suppressing or ignoring, any negative physical and emotional feelings that he may wake up with.
The nature of addiction is to avoid all negative experiences while attempting to feel a euphoric high at all times. This strategy has stopped working by the time the resident arrives at the Reprieve. Mindfulness meditation allows them to see this truth for themselves, through their own direct experience, and begin to develop a more effective strategy for dealing with unpleasant thoughts and emotions.
12-Step Presentation – Our Step Presentation is the process which enables our residents to begin to study, learn and practically apply the principles of 12 Step Recovery in their lives. Residents will complete, present and internalize each of the 12-steps in an intensive peer – supported setting. This is extensive, written work which each resident will present to his Program Specialist in front of his peers. This process is at the very core of what we do at The Reprieve and is the catalyst for substantial internal change. It also serves to help them develop healthy relationships and establish the communal support which is required to overcome Addiction and learn to live a satisfying and productive life free of drugs and alcohol.
Meals – Our meals are served family style. We start with guest introductions and a prayer of thanks. All of our staff and residents sit down together and enjoy a time of food and fellowship. In Lifeskills, residents, along with Staff, plan, prepare and cook meals which are easily replicated in their own kitchens. They will learn about nutritional needs, portion sizes, meal planning, and how to make healthier choices.
Recreational Activities – We are located in a small town community that allows us to offer a variety of activities. Each of our residents has a membership to the Opelika Sportsplex and Aquatics Center, which has an indoor pool, indoor track, cardio and weight equipment, basketball courts, racquetball courts, as well as outdoor fields. We also utilize local parks, state parks, museums, Auburn University, Lake Martin, and other opportunities unique to our community.
Community Meeting – The community meeting is an opportunity for our residents and staff to come together and talk about the day. We discuss areas where we can progress, but we also praise areas where we excel.
12-Step Meeting (every evening) – Residents attend local 12-Step meetings every evening.
Accountability – Accountability is the last thing that residents will do before “lights out”. Accountability is designed to increase the resident’s awareness of the self-destructive behaviors which accompany the disease of addiction. Their fellow residents the help them develop a plan for changing these behaviors, and hold them accountable for carrying out that plan. This is done in an intimate setting, usually no more than 4 residents together, and it provides them with a daily look into their own spiritual growth as it unfolds.