Calling All Alumni – Virtual Groups During COVID-19!

alumni group people around a campfire

Alumni groups build community and safeguard recovery.


There has been a spate of articles, webinars and Zoom presentations talking about the negative impact of COVID-19 on those in recovery from addiction. Isolation, limited in-person connection, and uncertainty are just a few of the stressors that affect everyone during a pandemic. But those with substance use disorders have additional challenges. And Sanford is reaching out to our alumni with group meetings and connection via telehealth.


Calling All Alumni!

At Sanford, the core objectives of our Alumni Programs are to help individuals stay connected, foster friendships, build community, provide and receive support, and reduce stigma. All these goals are more important than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic.


In this period of uncertainty and at times isolation, connection with other men and women in recovery is crucial for our alumni. And when our clients in early recovery hear about the challenges, hopes and successes our alumni have experienced it can be powerful!

Lynnel Brewster, RN, LPC, CCTP Sanford Clinical Director


The recovery support alumni groups offered by Sanford are a valuable resource where both current and former clients can benefit. Our alumni meetings are gender-specific, facilitated by Sanford staff, and hosted weekly via telehealth. These are “closed meetings” where former clients are invited to join our current clients. Current clients participate in-person while in Sanford’s safe environment. Alumni login via telehealth.


alumni groups girls together in a field


Our alumni meetings allow former clients to stay involved in the recovery community. Alumni groups also provide ongoing support for those who want to stay connected after treatment. It can provide a refresher for alumni who are having problems. And former clients of Sanford also benefit from receiving feedback and support from staff and current clients in the home where their recovery journeys began.


For current clients, the real life experience of those who go on after treatment is vital. Because they see the struggles, progress and triumphs of others. And for alumni, they can share the goals they have achieved, and any problems they are having. There is something special about being a part of the shared history of those homes. Sanford House at Cherry Street and Sanford House at John Street instill a sense of comradery and family long after treatment. 

Rae Rabideau, MS, Sanford Director of Operations


Alumni groups virtual men on hill


Women’s Virtual Alumni Group

Tuesday evenings at 7:00 PM – for information and login information email:

Men’s Virtual Alumni Group

Wednesday evenings at 7:00 PM – for information and login information email:


Sanford Behavioral Health is licensed and accredited as an addiction, eating disorder, and co-occurring mental health treatment facility, serving all of Michigan and beyond. Each of Sanford’s facilities in Greater Grand Rapids is carefully and diligently crafted to create a welcoming and comforting environment. Sanford is led by a psychiatrist-led team of medical, clinical, and support personnel providing medication-assisted, evidenced-based treatment to residential, outpatient, and telehealth patients. For more information, visit