At the time NARR was formed, recovery housing was mostly isolated from larger systems of health care, substance use disorder (SUD) treatment and social services. Apart from a few Oxford House contracts, no state recognized or supported recovery housing in a systematic way.

We envision a much different world where residences are part of a larger and better resourced system of coordinated services offered in the community. Residence providers would have access to training and educational opportunities to help them align their operations with national best practices. States would support organizations that implemented national best practice standards and offered credible third-party oversight to ensure quality service delivery. These and other features are part of our vision of fully supported and integrated systems organized at a state level. We have assisted several state agencies and provider groups in moving toward fulfillment of that vision.

large brick Victorian houses with gables and dormer windows

NARR System Development Services

Among NARR’s various programs and initiatives, several can be classified as work to help develop healthy state-level recovery housing systems. Conditions for the establishment and expansion of these systems vary significantly from state to state. State systems for addressing SUD also vary a great deal in their financial capacity, staff expertise, legislative relationships, and most importantly in their visions of what a healthy SUD system should look like. NARR provides a family of services to state agencies and to provider groups interested in developing or expanding statewide systems of recovery housing that conforms to best practices. In doing this we are unique in the depth of our collective experience and in our national network of over 30 affiliated state-level recovery housing support organizations. Our work in this area can be broken down into these categories:


Advisory and Project Planning Services
We are often consulted on the basics of system design and support, usually by a state’s primary agency for funding SUD services. Sometimes it’s to help them design a system from scratch. Other assignments have included introducing outcomes measurement or other features into existing systems. Assignments vary depending on a state’s needs.

We also work with state legislatures on legal frameworks needed to support recovery housing systems. For reasons discussed more thoroughly in our housing rights content, regulation and oversight of recovery housing is very different from mandatory licensure frameworks common in healthcare services. As co-architects of national model recovery residence legislation we have the experience to help legislators support world-class systems that conform with federal civil rights laws.


Project Management
System transformation work requires management. In many cases NARR can assist, managing projects from customized training programs to launching new support organizations that will act as focal points for the state’s recovery housing oversight and expansion plans.

No two development plans are the same, but all have elements in common. Contact NARR for information about how we can help you make the best of scarce state staff and financial resources to achieve your vision for recovery support services.


Training and Education
NARR develops and delivers training and educational content on a variety of recovery housing topics, most notably on operating residences that meet our best practice standards. Formats vary according to the needs of the audience, from live, on-site workshops to remote webinars, and now including a 20-module online, self-paced curriculum for residence operators. Our system development work almost always includes a training component. See our training overview for more information.


Technical Assistance
With a robust suite of technical assistance offerings, we can develop a package of knowledge, tools and resources that is right for you. Whether it's navigating regulatory frameworks, implementing best practices and training programs, or enhancing programmatic excellence, NARR's technical assistance programs are tailored to address the unique needs and challenges of the recovery community.