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Riverside Recovery Resources


Riverside,_California_view_from_Box_Springs-1Riverside Recovery Resources Review

John P. “Jack” Ketsdever volunteered at several for-profit recovery facilities and saw how financially taxing it was on their clients. No stranger to recovery himself, he decided to improve the problem by founding Riverside Recovery Resources in Riverside, California in 1985. The program offers 12-step based care in an affordable social model, and has since developed into the largest non-profit recovery provider in Riverside County.

Accommodations and Food

The accommodations at Riverside Recovery Resources consist of four separate houses (one for detox, the other three for residents) with a maximum capacity of 22 people. The detox house has only two rooms with two beds each while the other houses hold six each, again with two to a room. All beds are singles, and rooms have only minimal closet space. There is no TV for clients to watch, but residents are allowed to use Walkmans or radios—though notably not iPods. Visitors are also allowed, but only on Saturdays during scheduled visiting hours.

Meals are served three times a day. All cooking is done by the residents, with duties rotating every week or so. Three clients are assigned to the kitchen at a time and the food is fairly standard, with meals that include cereal for breakfast and sandwiches for lunch. Still, arrangements can be made for those with dietary restrictions.

Treatment and Staff

A majority of the treatment at Riverside Recovery Resources is offered through the First Step House, which provides both detox and a residential program for men. Detox is non-medical and lasts three to seven days; there are no doctors on-site. The general program at Riverside is 12-step oriented, and lasts between 60 to 90 days. Clients have both individual and group counseling, with group sessions held three to five times daily and individual sessions held anywhere from one to five times daily.

Typically, group sessions are once in the morning, once in the afternoon and once in the evening, while individual therapy is once in the morning and once at night. If clients feel they need extra sessions, however, staff members are generally available to accommodate these requests at no extra cost.

There are also various educational courses on topics like relapse prevention, drug and alcohol education and parenting skills. All sessions and seminars are taught by the six staff members on-site, all of whom are CDACs.

Other programs offered at Riverside Recovery Resources include the Alpha Program and the Beta Program. The Alpha Program is for those who have been convicted of a DUI one or more times and have had their driving privileges taken away. Whether court-ordered or referred by the DMV, the Alpha Program offers four-, six- and nine-month programs for first-time offenders, and 12- and 18-month programs for repeat offenders.

The Beta Program is an alcohol and drug abuse prevention and education program for teens and adolescents. Partnered with the Riverside County Department of Juvenile Probation, the Beta Program helps young adults struggling with alcohol and substance abuse, problems at school or at home or those with a history of violence. The program aims to reduce or diminish all of these in the young adult community in Riverside and the surrounding areas.


Riverside Recovery Resources does not have many extra resources to offer their residents due to the lack of state funds. They do, however, host various events such as outpatient groups for Spanish-speaking clients and mud runs, which are fundraisers where clients and alumni do long-distance runs through a muddy obstacle course to help raise money for the facility.

In Summary

Although Riverside Recovery Resources offers thorough treatment programs and a dedicated staff. The facility is state-funded—which means it’s free.

Riverside Recovery Resources Location

First Step House
40329 Stetson Ave
Hemet, CA 92544

Riverside Recovery Resources Cost

Free (30 days). Reach Riverside Recovery Resources by phone at (951) 674-5354. Find Riverside Recovery Resources on Facebook

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Photo courtesy of vlasta2 [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons (resized and cropped)

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