Georgia Council on Substance Abuse


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Save the Date

Aug 25-29, 2014

8th Annual

Georgia School of Addiction Studies

Savannah, GA


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May 2-3 CARES Connect

Flyer   Click Here

Register Now   Click Here


Georgia Certified Addiction Recovery Empowerment Specialist (CARES)

The mission of Georgia CARES’s is to promote long-term recovery from substance use disorders by providing experienced peer support and advocating for self-directed care.

CARES Vision Statement
We envision a recovery-oriented system of care that supports self-directed pathways to recovery by building on the strengths and resilience of individuals, families and communities.








We are administering a training program that is parallel to the mental health certified peer specialist program and are working directly with the Georgia Mental Health Consumer Network through funding from DBHDD. This is part of an effort to create a recovery-oriented system of care where peer-based recovery support is used as a fundamental part of community-based services and will enhance the treatment and recovery experience. This is a 40-hour (one week) training course. The trained peers and their supervisors will also be provided on-going support from members of the CARES Team. 


People in recovery who are interested in becoming a CARES must apply through the Georgia Council on Substance Abuse Committee for initial screening, and be approved by the CARES Selection Committee. Qualified candidates are selected for the training based on their employment status and the ability to meet the training guidelines. The following system was devised to assist program providers (employers) in meeting the guidelines that have been set by Medicaid:

•    Candidates who are in recovery and currently employed by a public or private provider of Medicaid Rehab Option billable services are considered for acceptance first.

•    Candidates who are in recovery, have distinguished themselves as peer leaders and are being sponsored by a Medicaid Rehab Option provider for possible hire are given next priority.

•    People in recovery who work within a peer-based recovery service or treatment program that has not yet qualified to bill for Medicaid Rehab Option are given next priority.

•    People in recovery seeking to improve their marketability in the physical or behavioral health fields are given next priority.

We will train a minimum of 45 addiction peers specialists statewide next year. This training will most likely take place in the metro Atlanta area.

2014 CARES Academy Dates

January  27-31 – CARES Academy 11

Applications due Nov 18, 2013

April 21-25 – CARES Academy 12

-Applications due Mar 3

  July 21-25 – CARES Academy 13

Applications due June 9

 We are offering a workshop entitled Recovery Oriented Systems of Care and
Applying for CARES
throughout the state in the coming months.

Click HERE for the updated locations and dates due to weather cancellations

CARES Description CARES Academy Application CARES Code of Ethics
Training Overview Recovery Bill of Rights
  • If you have previously submitted your application and wish to be considered for an upcoming Academy, please contact Owen Dougherty at

  • Please note, each applicant is responsible for their own hotel accommodations.

email or fax all application materials to:

Owen Dougherty, Acting CARES Program Coordinator
The Georgia Council on Substance Abuse
100 Edgewood Avenue, Suite 1685; Atlanta GA 30303
Email:   ; Phone: 404 523-3440  Fax: 678 701-1727


Advocacy with Anonymity CARES Pre-Academy

Hidden Treasures:
Building Community Connections

Understanding Alcoholism Scale
Talking About Recovery & CARES Elevator Speech Recovery Capital Scale & Plan
Relapse is not Part of Recovery CARES Core Skills Self-Assessment & Development Plan

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