Frequently Asked Questions

The Website


  1. What is Recovery within Reach?

Recovery within Reach is a complete, community-based resource guide for Tennesseans who seek recovery from mental illness, co-occurring disorders, and substance abuse. Here you will find information about recovery from where to find a WRAP® class to writings about the journey of recovery.

  1. What is your goal?

The mission of Recovery within Reach is to be the most complete and useful website for all things recovery in Tennessee with valuable recovery tools and links to help people find recovery in mental health, substance abuse, and co-occurring disorders for self, friends, and family.

  1. What is the best way to use this website?

Read the top tabs of main recovery topics and then narrow your search with the tabs along the left side of each page. When searching in the Housing within Reach page, click on the red house icon for the search tool. You can also click on “Quick Links” to search for the Recovery Glossary, the Calendar of Events, and Emergency Information.

  1. Who makes the website?

Recovery within Reach has been made possible through a 2007 CMS Real Choice Systems Change Person-Centered Planning grant coordinated through the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services Office of Consumer Affairs and Peer Recovery Services. The webmaster is Gerald Pitts ( Recovery within Reach has been carefully gathered and reviewed by a Content Review Committee that includes people from:

Depression & Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) of Tennessee

Frontier Health   

National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Tennessee

National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Davidson County 

Park Center- Nashville

Tennessee Association of Alcohol, Drug & other Addiction Services

Tennessee Department of Mental Health & Substance Abuse Services

Tennessee Mental Health Consumers’ Association

Park Center serves as the community contact for Recovery within Reach and connects the content committee and the webmaster.


Recovery in General


  1. Does my need for recovery ever end?

Recovery is an on-going journey and not a landing place. A person may come and go in and out of good recovery experiences. Like a journey, there may be forks on the path and bumps along the way. While some people have long periods of staying sober, mental health, and even remission, there may be times when you have to begin again. George Patton said, “Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom.”

  1. Does recovery mean going off my meds?

Medication is one of many good recovery tools that can be used. Science has made important strides making medications to treat mental illnesses and many people in recovery say medications help that they take every day. No one should ever go on or off prescribed medication without the okay from a doctor. If you feel medication is not helpful or if you have questions or concerns about side effects, talk to your doctor. Talking with your doctor is always a good idea.

  1. How do I know if I am in recovery?

Whether or not someone is in recovery is up to that person. For many people, recovery means living a good life in the place of their choice. Recovery Innovations of Arizona has said, “Recovery is remembering who you are and using your strengths to become all you can be.” Recovery also is “A process of change through which individuals improve their health and wellness, live a self-directed life, and strive to reach their full potential.” (

  1. How can I begin my recovery?

One helpful tool is the Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP®) by Mary Ellen Copeland. She says, “This plan could be used by anyone who wants to create positive change in the way they feel, or increase their enjoyment in life.” Visit Copeland’s site at


Certified Peer Recovery Specialists


  1. What types of jobs are available for Certified Peer Recovery Specialists?

Certified Peer Recovery Specialists are hired at various places in Tennessee with more being added every day. Some places include Peer Support Centers, Crisis Stabilization Units,  Recovery Courts, and Psychosocial Rehabilitation Programs. To locate current job openings click here

  1. Where can I find continuing education to maintain my Certified Peer Recovery Specialist certification?

There are online trainings and webinars here.  To locate a list of current in-person, live trainings, scroll down to the “Peer Trainings Board” at the bottom of that page. Trainings vary by agency and topic and occur in many places in Tennessee throughout the year for Certified Peer Recovery Specialists.

The annual statewide Certified Peer Recovery Specialist conference is another place to attend workshops that complete continuing education standards. For details click here.