unstructured peer counseling
Providing a venue for the unstructured peer counseling that is at the heart of AA and other 12-step programs is one of the primary functions of the Castro Country Club. The front steps of the 1901 Victorian that houses the Club has become a central gathering place for the sober community. People come to the Club simply to hang out with other sober people, to work the 12 steps with a sponsor or sponsee, or to talk with the on-duty volunteer about the challenges of sober living.
job training and skills-building
Over 45 people in recovery volunteer at the Club each week, running the espresso bar and supervising Club operations with support from the Club manager. Volunteer baristas staff the coffee bar and are required to have at least six months of continuous sobriety. Barbacks, many of whom are early in sobriety, assist with cleaning and stocking. All contribute to the culture of support and fellowship for fellow addicts and alcoholics in recovery. By providing a supportive work environment, the Club helps volunteers to develop marketable job skills and the self-esteem to pursue their dreams. Frequently, the Club manager provides employment references for volunteers.
social support and fellowship
One of the biggest challenges for people in early sobriety is simply learning how to live, work and socialize without drugs or alcohol. Meeting this challenge is one of the most important cultural contributions of the Castro Country Club, which has always been managed and operated by people in recovery. The Club fosters fellowship and community by regularly hosting variety shows, movie nights and game nights. On holidays, the Club throws potluck dinners and during the warmer months, barbeques on the back patio. Club patrons frequently organize social events and celebrations of milestones in recovery. All of these activities support and contribute to healthy interpersonal development for those in recovery.