Here's how our services have been celebrating Recovery Month

30 September 2020

Every September Change Grow Live celebrates Recovery Month. From poetry, to carpentry, film-making to walking, our services have been getting creative as they mark the occasion this year. Read on to hear more about their brilliant Recovery Month 2020 activities and personal experiences of what recovery means to the people we support. 

Hull - Recovery Street Film Festival 2020 winners

During Recovery Month we were delighted to find out a short film called ‘Break Free’ made by Hull ReNew is the winner of this year’s Recovery Street Film Festival.  

It’s the first time a Change Grow Live service has won the festival, so it’s an especially big achievement for everyone involved. Congratulations! 

The theme for this year’s festival was ‘isolation’. Due to the coronavirus, 2020 has been difficult for many of us and isolation throughout the UK lockdown has impacted all of us differently. In the film Dave, new to sobriety, is struggling during the lockdown when his Recovery Coordinator, James, checks in on him and his welfare. See what happens when he encourages Dave to distract his mind and asks, “what’s the most ridiculous thing you can think of?” 

West Sussex - recovery poetry and art

In West Sussex, the creative writing group has carried on meeting over Zoom. They dedicated some of their sessions to the theme of Recovery Month and received incredible poems from people at all stages of their recovery. Here are just a few of the poems that were submitted.  


Thoughts upon the water, like broken moonlight beams, 
An out of reach ambition is often how it seems, 
To triumph over, the friend and foe, that tries to 
kill my dreams. 

Recovery by Lyndon  


My fear is Alcohol 
I fear for my life with all this strife, 
I fear for the cravings as I know I will cave in. 
I fear the first glass as I know it won’t last!! 
I fear the first bottle as I know I will be blotto. 
I fear the stranger who could put me in danger. 
I fear the blackouts as I scream & shout. 
I fear that I’m bad & make everyone sad. 
I fear for others as I’m a mother, my loving children will always cover. 
I fear the next day & what people say. 
I fear the thought of having that drink knowing that really it should be down the sink...... 

Fear: fact or fiction? by Rosie 

A piece of art made by Lara

What sobriety means to me, a poem and artwork by Lara

Sobriety means to me, clear thinking, clear head, clear mind and clear body.  
Sobriety means peace, tranquillity, sleep and joy. 
Sobriety rocks and has opened up new channels having moved from a p@@s artist to an artist. 
Sobriety means to me the feeling of being free and opening up creative juices I never knew I had. 

You can read more of the inspiring poems we received here, including Decadence by Klairissa and I Didn’t Start Out That Way/ The Slide by LR

Manchester – 'Road to recovery’ bench

In Manchester, volunteer Anthony has been getting creative by building a bench and table. Once he’s finished, his creations will be placed in the garden at Bradnor Point, the same service hub that Anthony used to attend. 

Anthony said: “The staff at Bradnor Point are great at what they do. I was a pain in the backside over the years. I’m now a volunteer and this is my way of giving back.” 

The service has also been holding talks and events over Zoom. The first guest speaker was Paul, who shared his advice for safely detoxing from alcohol at home. You can find more information about starting a home detox on Paul’s blog. Everyone agreed it was exactly the sort of advice they’d want before attempting a detox.

Hertfordshire - words of wisdom 

Service users from Spectrum in Hertfordshire have shared some of their experiences of recovery. Here are some of their words of wisdom and encouragement.

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“No one in this world gets anything back from drugs or alcohol. It steals from who you are and those around you. Never lose belief in yourself and what you can be or achieve. Confront your demons because you can defeat them. Do all you can to fulfil your dreams because the sky is the limit.” 

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“I didn’t have any faith in myself. Nothing. It took someone else, my Recovery Worker, to have faith in me for the tiny little seed of self-respect (and it was minute) to grow.” 

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“I knew I needed to care for myself but I didn’t think I was worth it. I didn’t think I deserved anything. I’d never given myself a chance. I thought whatever I’ve done, I now deserve to give myself a bit of a chance and see where life takes me.” 

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“I came back on home leave from rehab on the train and noticed the clouds and red kites flying about. Now I look at the sky and nature. I love the clouds. In my addiction, everything was a bit grey and I didn’t notice nature. It’s your state of mind.” 

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“Everyone’s journey is different but the goal of recovery is the same – to reclaim your life.” 

Blackburn - a breath of fresh air

At Inspire Blackburn with Darwen, staff organised a series of walks to get everyone out and about in the fresh air. Staff, volunteers and people who use the service were all welcome to attend.  

You can see pictures from their walk over on their Facebook page

How we can support with your recovery

We hope you’ve enjoyed reading about Recovery Month 2020 here at Change Grow Live. We have felt inspired by all the ways that our services, volunteers and people we support, have got involved and expressed what recovery means to them. 

Making changes in your life is always easier when you have people to support you. Our peer mentors use their own experiences to help others. Many of them have been in recovery themselves, or have used one of our services in the past. Discover peer mentors in your local area or find out where your nearest service is today