Saturday, 22 April 2017

Get Involved! Help Us Grow!

Training Scholarships Available

Volunteer Training Scholarships

As we are now into our third decade, more and more people are “discovering the power of choice” and are eager to benefit from SMART’s approach to overcoming addiction.

This is great news!

We currently have an incredible team of hard-working volunteers who are providing over 2,000 face-to-face meetings around the world PLUS a menu of online services including daily meetings, a 24/7 chat room, and message board forums. But as you may already know, the demand for SMART’s services continues to grow at a rapid pace.

We set aside the month of April each year to celebrate our amazing volunteers and the work they do and to encourage others to help us start even more meetings to meet the growing demand.

Here’s How You Can Help!

Volunteer: Share in the rewarding experience of volunteering by joining our dedicated team of trained volunteers. [ More Information ]

Scholarships for training are available

All SMART facilitators and online volunteers are required to become thoroughly familiar with the SMART 4-Point Program by participating in our Distance Training Program. Volunteer training scholarships are available during April to cover the cost of the training for those who need financial assistance.

Volunteer Training


Support the Volunteer Scholarship Program

During the month of April, you can help someone become a trained volunteer by making a gift to the Volunteer Training Scholarship Fund. Donations of any amount are helpful and welcome — and thanks to generous matching challenges this year, you can double your impact!


We’ve already received a record number of new volunteer applications this month, far more than we anticipated! Your gift to the Training Scholarship Fund makes it possible for us to provide the training to ready our new volunteers to start new meetings, Thank you for your generous support!

Support Volunteer Training

Partner with us

The rewards of helping others make a difference in their lives are many and long lasting. We invite you to partner with us to grow SMART, either as a volunteer, a donor, or both. You’ll be glad you did! [ More Information ]

Together, we can make more meetings available to those wishing to make positive changes in their lives, and the lives of their loved ones.

Thank you for your support during Volunteer Month.

Handout for Local Facilitators

Local Facilitators

Please provide these flyers (click on the image) to interested parties in your meetings.

Your qualified participants can apply for Volunteer Month Training Scholarships!



Friday, 21 April 2017

Doctors Appeal to Treat Drug Abuse as a ‘Chronic Disease’

In the United States alone, drug abuse overdose kills tens of thousands of Americans each year. Doctors appeal to the authorities to handle the epidemic as a medical emergency. According to the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC), about 91 people died every day because of opioid overdose. In 2015, 52,000 died because of a […]

The article is available on Detox of South Florida

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Thursday, 20 April 2017

Drug Addiction: What Really Happens Inside Your Body?

A sense of euphoria is achieved in people who continuously abuse drugs. When over stimulation of neurotransmitters is heightened, the person craves to experience the same effect over and over again. This resulting repetitive behavior is what eventually develops into drug addiction. Substance abuse affects the brain functions through interrupting its communication system, primarily because […]

was first seen on

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Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Living In Fear With Drug Addict? You May Need To Read This Right Now

“I’m worried that if I leave him, no one will be there to take care of him,” “I feel scared that he’ll/she’ll be abandoned by her parents and friends,” “Where will he live if I turn him away?” and “I don’t think I’ll be able to raise our children all alone”- are these statements running […]

is republished from

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Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Mindfulness: How to do it

Part two of a three part series
By Bill Abbott, MD

If you paid careful and mindful attention to Part One of this series on Mindful Awareness enough to want to try it, you might be asking, “How do I do it?”

Practice, practice, practice

Mindful Awareness among other things is a practice in the fullest definition of that word. It is an intention that needs to be acted upon repeatedly, that is not just “one and done” – all fixed. As with any other learned behavior or skill, the more you do this, the more the benefits will grow and accrue.

Repetition means near daily practice and it matters less as to the duration of each practice as it does to the frequency of them; better five minutes a day for a week, than 35 minutes on only one day.

Of course, since Mindful Awareness can be many different things as noted in Part One, there are several aspects to these practices; basic – informal versus formal practices.

Informal practice

Informal practices are many and are all based on the single premise of remembering to pay attention, albeit even briefly, to the present experience many times a day. Many people use reminders or cues over the course of the day to bring them into present awareness. For example, every time you look at your wristwatch, just pause and pay attention to what is happening right then; not what you are doing at this moment but rather being present there while you are doing it. Try it and you will know what I mean; it is quite a different experience.

Formal practice  

Formal practices are many and varied.  They are considered formal because you are setting aside a given amount of time specifically for this purpose. Most of these practices would be considered under the general term of “meditation”. Thus, it is important to emphasize that not all meditation is mindful, and further, Mindfulness Meditation is practiced in many ways, as already noted.

Mindful Awareness formal practices are most often done while sitting, but can also be done while standing, walking, or lying down. Some practices are sort of in between the formal and informal, such as my favorites, washing my hands, and driving.

But for purposes of brevity here, let’s consider the most common; sitting. Now you can go full tilt here with this by sitting in the lotus position on a specific special cushion of buckwheat husks, but no need – a chair works fine. The position is most important; that is comfortable, erect, and balanced; often described as “dignified”, if possible, with minimal or no support in the back. But most important, whatever you choose needs to be okay for being there for more than just a few minutes.

From here it gets more detailed and it’s important to keep this posting brief.  To repeat, it is not so much the length of the sitting but how often you do it. My pledge to myself is to meditate every day without any commitment to how long I do it. That works for many.

Start with breath awareness

For starters, most teachers including me, begin with breath awareness. This is focused attention to the simple sensations of the breath wherever you feel it most prominently. My spot is the nose; yours might be the chest or belly. But the point is to keep your attention to just that; each breath in each present moment. When the mind wanders, which it will do, just note it and come back to the breath. No worries here; that’s just what normal minds do.

It can go on from there, but at least that’s a start. You can  find many excellent guided practices online. I often recommend those by psychologist Tara Brach. I’ve attended her classes and here’s a link: There are many others, of course.

In conclusion, no matter what, this is something you can choose to try knowing. It has been helpful to many others – me included.

Next time, in Part Three, we will address the question as to “Why you might want to do it”. That will be  a review of the solid science which supports this practice for those with addiction.


Bill Abbott is a long time SMART volunteer. He can often be found in SMART meetings in the Boston area and in our online community.




True Blue State: A Case of Depression

Millions of American suffers from clinical depression or major depressive disorder. Clinical depression remains as the most prevalent mental disorder in the country. Proved as a severe mood disorder it greatly affects daily normal routine such as eating, sleeping and working. However, feeling blue is different from depression. Depression varies in seriousness from mild, brief […]

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