Recovery Community Organization Development

A Recovery Community Organization is an independent, non-profit organization led and governed by representatives of local communities of recovery. These organizations organize recovery-focused policy advocacy activities, carry out recovery-focused community education and out reach programs, and/or provide peer-based recovery support services (P-BRSS).

Recovery Community Organizations (RCO) are developing across the country at the local level to address the needs of people in or seeking recovery. We know that when recovery organizes in reaching out to others, recovery expands and grows.

Georgia Council on Substance Abuse (GCSA) and Georgia Mental Health Consumer Network (GMHCN) with the support of Georgia’s Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities (DBHDD) have been at the forefront nationally in training and supporting local recovery peer leadership. Recovery Community Organizations driven and supported by these local leaders are emerging across Georgia. 

Recovery Community Organizations:

  • Provide only non-clinical services which differ from treatment programs
  • Respect and support all pathways of recovery
  • Have their own governing board
  • Are led and governed by people in recovery
  • Routinely engage people in recovery, their families, and other stakeholders in a participatory process of program decision-making and conducting activities
  • Are grassroots programs/organizations and are active in their communities
  • Have a mission statement that focuses on addiction recovery
In Georgia, GCSA & GMHCN are engaged in the movement, working with local peer leaders to:
  • Listen to local recovery communities about how they want to continue to support recovery;
  • Bring a national perspective on RCO development, operation and sustainability; 
  • Continue to develop local resources and leaders in a recovery focused and supportive way;
  • Promote programs and services deemed necessary by local communities;
  • Keep a feedback loop open to support working together; and
  • Develop local awareness of the recovery movement and local behavioral health services. 
*Adapted from the website of Faces and Voices of Recovery
For too long those affected by alcohol and other drug problems have been absent from the public policy debate. Faces & Voices of Recovery was founded at a Summit in St. Paul, Minnesota, the culmination of more than two years of work to provide focus for a growing advocacy force among people in long-term recovery from addiction to alcohol and other drugs, their families, and allies.
Since then, the addiction recovery movement has exploded- in the US and around the globe.


Learn More About RCO’s

To the right is an interactive map of RCOs and Peer Support Wellness and Respite Centers in Georgia. For more information on becoming a member of the network or developing an RCO for your community, please reach out to GCSA’s RCO development team

Brian Kite– Recovery Community Organization Project Coordinator
Emily Ribblett– BCOR Project Coordinator
Gene Conroy– Community Outreach Manager

Georgia’s RCO Network

We believe that our state’s recovery is only as strong as the relationships we maintain. We also believe that in order to continue healing as communities, we must be committed to staying connected with each other to share our success stories, use each other as resources in overcoming challenges, and to form a network of passionate recovery champions that will make recovery more accessable to everyone. In this spirit, GCSA lead the charge in forming an official statewide RCO network to foster ongoing learning and collaboration across the state. Through this network, RCO leadership and/or representation from nearly all of Georgia’s self identified RCOs have officially begun attending monthly learning collaborative webinars as well as quarterly, in person meetings. 
To learn more about what’s happening at your local RCO, be sure to check the GCSA recovery events calendar regularly. To receive weekly event RCO event flyers, join our mailing list by filling out the form below.