Northern Illinois Council on Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Behavioral Health Services (Nicasa) is a nonprofit behavioral that provides mental health, behavioral health and chemical dependency treatment services in the northern suburbs of Chicago. It was started in 1966 by local AA members to establish a more “humane approach” to assisting recovering alcoholics, addicts and their families on the road to recovery. It now offers services at eight locations including Bridge House, a coed sober living facility that helps alcoholics and addicts achieve an independent lifestyle.
Accommodations and Amenities
Bridge House is set up Brady Bunch-style: one floor houses men, another women. Depending on capacity, sometimes men and women will have to share a floor, although there is a women’s-only bathroom for extra privacy. A total of 20 residents at a time can be accommodated here.
All meals are included in the monthly fee and are typically prepared by residents themselves. The house treats clients to takeout once in awhile to give them a break. There is a TV in the living room where residents can gather in the evenings and weekends. One staff member is always present, staying overnight. During the day, there may be up to four staff members on the premises for supervision and support.
Rules and Regulations
Residents typically spend the hours between 9 am and 4 pm Monday through Friday either at their job or looking for employment. Bridge House is aware that some residents may work unconventional shifts and can accommodate that on a case-by-case basis. Dinner is served daily from 4:30 pm to 5:30 pm, after which daily chores like cleaning up bedrooms and communal areas must be done. There is a late curfew during the week with an added hour on the weekends.
To successfully complete the program, residents must stay for at least 90 days but the average stay is about four months. After the first 30 days, residents are granted more privileges like being able to meet family members off-site for coffee and attend off-site 12-step meetings. Residents must attend at least three meetings per week and obtain a sponsor. There are four different meetings held in-house to make attendance easy for residents. Residents are also encouraged within their first 30 days to obtain 25 phone numbers of people in recovery. Following the rules, paying rent and participating in the house’s daily chores gains residents further privileges.
Bridge House accepts individuals with co-occurring disorders and keeps their medication in a locked closet to ensure safety.
Bridge House is a cozy, home-like sober living in the tranquil Chicago suburb of Waukegan. As the first coed recovery house to open in Lake County, they have plenty of experience and are backed by Nicasa’s pristine reputation. The organization is the sole provider of alcohol and drug abuse evaluations for individuals arrested for alcohol-related offenses in Lake County.
3016 Grand Ave
Waukegan, IL 60085
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