As a worldwide community of recovering individuals and Refuge Recovery groups we are called upon to meet in-person, and regularly, and therefore we feel the need as the RR service board and RR world service office to offer some help, some guidance and some encouragement for this unprecedented medical situation.
We believe that addressing our Refuge Recovery groups and members concerns over Covid 19 will allow us to respond skillfully and in ways that will keep our focus on bringing the RR practice and the RR sangha to as many people as possible while maintaining a high level of  group unity.
Providing guidance on health issues is outside the scope of the Refuge Recovery World Services Office. We do advise following your local city, county and state/province guidelines regarding small meetings and gatherings. RR Meeting leaders please check these guidelines frequently.
We honor each RR group’s responsibility to discuss and determine by a vote what is best for their meeting. Please remember voting in group business meetings is a necessary step before changing meeting practices. Electronic mail and text voting is recommended to speed the democratic decision making process.
Some RR groups already have changed social practices at their meetings. Please follow local guidelines from official city, state, county authorities. Some meeting changes have included: avoiding shaking hands and handholding; making sure surfaces in meetings are sanitary and observing social distancing. Please use group voting to change meeting social practices.
Regardless of group decisions, each individual is responsible for their own health decisions. If you are experiencing cold/flu symptoms, please stay home from in-person meetings and attend an online meeting.
Refuge Recovery is being called upon as a sangha to offer a place of refuge in the midst of fears and uncertainty. Those individuals and families suffering from addiction need our meetings to happen whenever and wherever possible.
In service of this effort, Refuge Recovery online meetings are greatly expanding. Our website refugerecovery.org is the home for online Refuge Recovery meetings. Simply use the “All Online meetings” menu to find a link to a meeting.
RR meetings whose meeting places are closed temporarily are invited to immediately start open online versions of their meetings on the RR website. Meetings have already started online scheduling at their regular times on refugerecovery.org.
Sign up with refugerecoveryworldservices@refugerecovery.org to lead your meeting at its regular time on the Refuge Recovery website.
If you are a member with some experience in RR, please sign up to lead an open online RR meeting. We need your help in our effort to begin offering online meetings 24 hours a day over the next month. We believe this will be of great benefit to our program as a whole. Your service and a commitment to run a meeting at the same time, once a week for six weeks, will allow us to offer online meetings in every time zone in the world. To lead an online meeting contact refugerecoveryworldservices@refugerecovery.org.
If your RR group has been contacted by your meeting facility stating that they are closing for meetings, please email RR World Services so we can continually update website listings. Also let us know if you have found a temporary location to meet so we can add that info to meeting listings as well.
We appreciate all those who do the hard work of showing up and leading meetings, offering mentorship and providing leadership to newer members.
We will be here with frequent updates regarding Refuge Recovery.
Please contact us with questions and suggestions.
Rachael Savage
Russ Smith
Joseph Souhrada
Noah Levine
Refuge Recovery World Services Board of Directors