Book Spotlight:

Discover what happens after treatment in 'The Thirteenth Step'

by Markus Heilig


The 12-step program is the most widely accepted program for addiction and recovery. This program focuses on following 12 specific steps including: admitting that one cannot control one's alcoholism, addiction or compulsion; recognizing a higher power that can restore sanity; examining past errors with the help of a sponsor; making amends for these errors; learning to live a new life with a new code of behavior; helping others who suffer from the same alcoholism, addictions or compulsions. In 1939, these 12 steps were first published in the textbook, "Alcoholics Anonymous," and many addiction recovery programs have adopted them.


Over the past few years controversy around the effectiveness of the 12-step program has emerged and, as a result, many other treatment programs for addiction have been implemented, such as SMART (Self-Management and Recovery Training) Recovery


Location Updates
Culver City: Sovereign Health's facility in Culver City has been doing some remodeling and just received a beautiful new paint job!   


San Clemente: Our San Clemente facility welcomed new Program Director, Dr. Diana Panizzon.


Rancho San Diego: Our adolescent facility in Rancho San Diego is pleased to welcome Jon Diprofio as Classroom Supervisor.


Ft. Myers: Sovereign's Florida facility passed licensure for DCF and ACHA, and is now accepting patients on the Mental Health track.


Chandler: Our Women's facility in Chandler, Arizona is pleased to welcome Kelly Vickrey as the new Program Director as well as James Condon as the new Site Training Director.


Palm Springs: Palm Springs continues to make strides towards opening their new location in upcoming months.


White River Academy: White River Academy held a Parent's Weekend at their facility during the month of April that turned out to be a huge success.  

Alumni Spotlight: Nicole H.


1. What was your life like before coming into Sovereign Health?


I was unable to pick my head off of the pillow. I was at my lowest point. I had attempted suicide and was placed in the hospital for seven days. They released me once they thought I was stable.  One week later I continued with suicidal thoughts and took pills to end my life. Fortunately, I was unsuccessful.


2. What are the most difficult parts struggling with addiction/mental health?


The most difficult part for me was struggling to accept that I needed to be on medication and ask for help.


3. What did you learn during treatment that is most helpful in your life today?


I learned that there is no need to feel the stigma of having a mental health disease. I also learned better coping skills that helped me in my everyday life. The program constantly kept us busy with classes, homework and activities that I would not have normally done at home if I was left to battle my depression on my own. It also provided an atmosphere of support after a long emotional day. My housemates were a constant reinforcement for me to use better coping skills.  The clinicians dove into my past hurts and I was able to release unforgiveness that had kept me bound and unable to move forward in my life.


4. Describe how your life is different now. What is the best part of your life today?


My life is so different today. I have learned to embrace life and its challenges that life presents. I have the coping abilities and the communications skills needed to feel confident about living. I have changed my way of thinking. My best thinking got and kept me stuck before I came to the program.  My mind has since been renewed to a different way of thinking.


5. What are some of your goals for the future?


My goal in the future is to help support others who are struggling with their own mental illness and to let them know that there is help. 


6. What would you want to tell other people that are struggling with the same issues right now that you were?


I would tell them not to feed into the lie that your brain has programmed you to believe. You are loveable. You have the strength to make it! Trouble does not last always. Every problem presented in your life was only pilgrims passing through. Get help now and don't wait. Call Sovereign they will help you if you want the help and you are willing to do the work.

Inspirational Story

Dick Beardsley: A marathoner's road to recovery and philanthropy

Mental health disorders and substance abuse disorders do not discriminate. They affect all people of all races, ages and socioeconomic statuses. Overcoming and living with a mental health or substance abuse disorder is challenging. Substance abuse disorders are more common than many might think. 

My Journey 

By Nicole W-H


Unable to get out of my bed. Oh God, my soul's screaming, I need to be fed.

Saying good night with a bottle of pills, Woke up, dammit! I was not thrilled.

Phone rings, I answer: "Hello who is this?" He could hear that I was pissed.

With tears in my eyes, I was sitting on the floor. He answered: "This is Sovereign Health, we've talked before,

How are you doing?" The soft voice said. "I'm pissed as hell! I'm mad!"

He answered. "What is the matter?" with great surprise. I stated. "I can't stop these tears that come out of my eyes".

"Just took some pills and thought I'd meet death as my prize!" He stated that there is help, and "I want to help you.

Come to Sovereign, and you won't want your life to be through. You will find your reason to live;

Thoughts of killing yourself will go dead!" Packed my bags and boarded a plane.

All I could see was grey skies and rain. I came through the door with no expectations.

Sat in classes, that required my participation. Learned some new skills each class that I sat in.

Had my meds changed so that I could be even. Talked to my therapist; talked about the past.

"You can't help me!" She said "On the contrast." "You will get through it! You are strong" 

Not so down that I could not see up. Started to feel things inside me erupt,

A ray of hope; a glimmer of light. Things are not that bad. My Future is bright!

I can go on; I can make it! Learned some new skills and I can take it!

Life! Give it to me I will embrace it! I'm not giving up; I will make it!

Even if I have to, for a little while fake it!

Even if I have to, for a little while fake it!

Even if I have to, for a little while fake it! 


  Written by Nicole W-H, Sovereign Health Group Alumni

For Alumni related query contact Tori Degroote at or (866) 546 3756
Sovereign Health Group
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