Why volunteer as a SMART Family & Friends Facilitator
Becoming a SMART F&F Facilitator can be rewarding as well as beneficial in helping with your own recovery from a loved one’s addictive behaviour. Providing and gaining support alongside those who share similar experiences and goals is what makes mutual aid so powerful. Sharing experiences with others not only helps us with our own situations but also brings comfort and hope in the knowledge we are not facing them on our own.
What is asked of SMART Family & Friends Facilitators?
Even though this is a volunteer task and it is gratefully acknowledged that individuals are giving up their own time, it is asked that Facilitators are mindful of being the ‘custodians’ or representative of the SMART Recovery movement out in local communities. The reputation and future success of SMART Recovery depends on Facilitators, who are asked to:
- Abide by the Facilitators code of conduct.
- Complete the SMART Family & Friends Facilitator training (You will be enrolled once your volunteer application has been approved).
- Register your meetings with Central Office.
- Run meetings according to the SMART Recovery Meeting Structure.
- Ensure the Opening Statement is read at every meeting.
- Share the Meeting Guidelines at every meeting.
Who is this Volunteer Role suitable for?
Empathy is at the heart of mutual aid and it is with this in mind that we encourage our SMART F&F Facilitators to have lived experience with supporting someone with addiction issues. Once you’ve put the F&F Programme and tools to work in your own life, you can reach out and train to start a new F&F meeting in your community.
For those who may also be in recovery from your own addictive behaviour, we require that you have 2+ years of clear recovery time behind you and have direct experience of supporting a loved one with addiction issues.
And if you have been in recovery personally, please keep the following considerations in mind:
- SMART F&F meetings are designed to support those affected by a loved one’s behaviours. At times the meetings can be emotional as participants articulate how they feel. This can be hard to process if you have been through addiction, causing you to reflect on your own past behaviour and the impact it has had on your family and friends.
- All of our SMART meetings aim to offer a safe place to come and gain support in a non- judgemental environment where individuals can be open and honest. People in recovery from their own addiction issues may find it difficult not to step in to ‘justify’ or to try to explain some behaviours. It’s important to keep in mind the aim of the meetings- to help those who are experiencing the other side.
To apply please complete the online application form here