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What Are the Expectations of Refugio House?

After your addiction treatment program is complete, enrolling in Refugio House is part of a sensible Aftercare Plan.

Refugio House is not addiction treatment. Our home is run by people who are also in recovery. This is known as the Peer Recovery Model. The House Managers have a job very similar to a Resident Assistant in a college dorm. They will be your peers, and they can model recovery for you.

A sober living home prepares you to model recovery in your own home in the future. To accomplish this, Refugio House has established the following expectations that may be modified or clarified from time to time by the House Manager.


We understand that if you are in recovery from addiction, you may not have much money at your disposal. You may not even have a regular job yet. We understand that, but it is beside the point. When you live in Refugio House, you will be expected to pay your bills on time, every time. There are no exceptions. This will remind you that you have adult responsibilities with which to attend, and that your money should go toward things you need (like housing), not things you do not (like drugs or alcohol).

Substance abuse

A sober living home is designed to be a safe place that includes no drug use and abuse temptations. That means that you cannot have the following items in your room or on the premises: Alcohol (including hygiene products that list alcohol as one of the first three ingredients), drugs prescribed for another, drugs of abuse, or products capable of being inhaled. Refugio House requires you to submit to drug and alcohol tests, including tests in a laboratory. Noncompliance in this home is considered a failed test, and failed tests can be grounds for expulsion. This is designed to remind you of the importance of staying sober. The threat of a test could help you to avoid the temptation to experiment. Please provide the house manager with a copy of all prescriptions and over-the-counter medications. In the event of a positive test, you will have the opportunity to pay for a laboratory test to confirm the results. Residents are responsible to pay for outside testing. Refugio House pays for routine on-site urinalysis only.


Refugio House is designed to run like a family home. That means people who live here are expected to handle chores. You might be asked to clean the kitchen, the bathrooms, or the main living space. You might have lawn duties or outbuilding duties, and you might be asked to cook. These tasks can help you to stay connected to the home, and they can help you remember the rhythms involved with keeping a house up and running.


Maintaining a communal living space involves communication. Refugio House facilitates open communication through regular house meetings. House meetings are scheduled 6 PM Sundays and at other times in the event of a crisis. Missing these meetings could be grounds for expulsion. Meetings can help you learn how to solve conflicts with the people you live with, and that could help you to live in a happy way with your family when you move back home.


Regular attendance at support group meetings such as Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, Celebrate Recovery, or Smart Recovery are required of every resident. Residents on probationary status will be required to attend meetings daily. Residents not on probationary status will attend at least four outside meetings per week. Residents will also be required to have outside sponsors mentoring their recovery.


Many residents may be enrolled in an Intensive Outpatient Program or see a private therapist. The house manager may request proof that you are attending these classes and appointments regularly. While Refugio House is not a treatment program, we encourage such participation and work with qualified professionals.


At Refugio House, you will be required to get a job so that you can pay your bills, contribute to the larger society, and develop a sense of self worth. If you cannot find a job or are disabled, we will ask you to volunteer in the community so that you may still make a contribution to the world in some way.


Residents will be subject to an 12 AM curfew Sunday through Thursday and a 1 AM curfew Friday and Saturday. Overnight passes for up to two days in a row will be issued upon approval of the community and the House Manager with a maximum of three overnight passes per week. Compliance with the house expectations and completion of chores will be the prerequisites for an overnight pass. If the community feels that a resident is not working his program well, a pass may be denied or delayed.


You may feel quite open about your recovery and the steps you have taken to make a recovery come to light, but the people around you might feel the need for privacy. Some people in your home may not feel up to the demands of hosting a guest. As a result, overnight visitors are rarely allowed and will need the approval of the community, the House Manager, and the Executive Director.


Communal living with strangers is easier when everyone makes a commitment to get along, and there are rules that enforce good behavior. Refugio House has a zero-tolerance policy with respect to violence (both physical and verbal) and sexual acting out. Safety is number one. If a resident acts in such a way as to make the other residents feel unsafe, he will be asked to leave.

Internet access

The Internet is a big part of modern life, and you might use it to do all sorts of important things, including finding a job, doing a job, communicating with a sponsor, and learning more about addiction. Refugio House provides Wi-Fi and a communal computer and printer for the residents. In no case will residents use Refugio House facilities to access pornography, gambling, or other questionable content. Violations will be dealt with in community meetings.


A sober lifestyle begins with a solid routine, and nothing disrupts a routine more than travel. As a result, the community and manager may restrict travel outside the community. As a general rule, trips lasting longer than the two-night maximum overnight pass may result in discharge from the program. In such cases, a resident will be eligible to reapply immediately upon return but may lose their particular room, bed, etc.


Refugio House is a pet-free sober home. However, if you use a service animal, you may be allowed to bring it with you. Prospective residents should bring documentation establishing an animal is a legitimate service animal.

Sleep/wake cycles

An addiction can seriously disrupt your ability to fall asleep at night and wake up refreshed in the morning. You might find that you feel the urge to stay up all night, and if you do, you might find it hard to wake up on time for work in the morning. Refugio House observes Quiet Time from curfew until 7 AM every day. This could help to reset your sleep/wake clock, and that could help you to handle life’s responsibilities a little better.

Following these expectations can clearly help you to pull together sober habits, but they are not just guidelines. Refusal to meet expectations could jeopardize your place in our sober living home. You could be expelled right away, or you could be expelled when you don’t meet expectations repeatedly. It pays to know what the expectations are, and when you do, it pays to follow them.