Each new resident of Hensley House must have a minimum of 30 days clean and sober prior to entry, no exceptions. All residents must pass scheduled and random weekly urinalysis tests as well as breathalyzer tests. I use 13 panel urinalysis cups and do not use the resident’s insurance for lab testing. There are zero narcotics of ANY kind allowed in the houses. I do not allow any kind of medically assisted treatment in the homes. Each resident must gain employment within two weeks. They must get a sponsor within two weeks. Each resident must actively be working a program of recovery for the duration of his stay with us. This includes weekly eye to eye meetings with their sponsor, attendance of at least 5 recovery meetings weekly, prayer and meditation in the mornings, ten stepping throughout the day, and writing nightly inventory every evening. Each resident must carry the message at an H&I opportunity at least twice a month. Residents are given a chore that is to be performed every day. There are strict curfew requirements that get later as the resident stays at the house longer. Finally, each resident is required to attend the weekly house meetings on Sundays. The house meetings typically last about two hours and we go in-depth into each resident’s personal life, social life, spiritual life, and overall life in recovery.
Each resident receives a membership to the YMCA upon arrival. Additionally, all residents have access to our pool, full gym, ping pong table, pool table, full length shuffleboard table, dart board, two full gaming stations with separate tv’s and PlayStation 5 and X-Box 1, multiple stand-up arcade games, 33 nerf guns and thousands of darts, multiple house bicycles, multiple sets of house golf clubs, cornhole boards, frisbee golf sets, wood working station, piano, four acoustic guitars, three electric guitars and two amplifiers.
If a relapse occurs, the resident is immediately asked to leave, no exceptions. When this occurs, I instantly make three phone calls.
1) The resident’s parents/family 2.) The treatment center where the resident came from 3) The resident’s sponsor.
Our current relapse rate is one relapse every six months which we’re very proud of! Finally, a resident is only allowed to return to Hensley House after successful completion of at least 30 days in a substance abuse treatment center.
By far the biggest thing that sets Hensley House apart is the camaraderie and brotherhood felt in the houses. I spend a great deal of time and funding on house outings and activities all at zero cost to the residents. Our recent outings include Six Flags, multiple Longhorn football, baseball, and basketball games, Austin Urban Axe Throwers, K1 Go-Karts, multiple camping trips, multiple hunting trips, multiple rounds of golf, Formula 1 and Nascar races, floating the Comal and Guadalupe rivers, house paintball tournaments, regular trips to the batting cages, multiple fishing trips, skydiving, bowling outings, dozens of concerts – with Gorillaz and Deadmau5 being the most recent, rodeo and bull riding events, and many trips to the local arcade (just to name a few…). These outings re-teach the residents how to enjoy their lives in recovery and it has had a DIRECT impact on their ability to achieve long-term sobriety. I firmly believe happiness is one of the biggest enemies of relapse/overdose. The average length of stay at Hensley House is just over ten months. Our combined Hensley Houses operate as a tight knit family, and we take our recovery VERY seriously, and we have a total blast in the process!
I hope this information is helpful for you and your staff when considering the aftercare options for your residents.
Take care, and I greatly appreciate your interest in Hensley House Sober Living!