Welcome to
Starfish Recovery & Wellness
starfish on beach
Who are we?

Starfish Recovery & Wellness is the leading recovery organization for the use of holistic wellness to support addiction recovery and improve recovery outcomes. Starfish Recovery & Wellness' whole person approach is designed to increase the likelihood of long term recovery. In addition to supporting traditional recovery pathways, we use a diverse set of evidence-based wellness practices to help residents build a foundation for a new life.

Why Starfish?
  • World class programming at all stages of recovery
  • Licensed/accredited providers
  • Structured recovery residential living
  • Coordination of clinical care
  • Measurable Outcomes
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Five Pronged Approach

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Emotional

Identifying and managing your emotions, or "choosing how you feel" is a crucial skill for those in early recovery. Our mindfulness program provides our residents with training in focusing on the present moment without judgement. Over time, they develop a set of tools that allow them to bring their best selves to each moment and each day, regardless of the life challenges that arise. Our partnership with the InnerWork Center allows us to offer weekly mindfulness classes.

Physical

Exercise releases natural chemicals in the brain that increases focus, mood, and energy. In relation to addiction and recovery, studies show that CrossFit, specifically, creates a socially supportive environment, increases preference for and tolerance to exercise, and decreases depression and anxiety. The social support, the sense of community and belonging, and the teamwork CrossFit fosters are all keys to expediting our brain's healing process. We team with Shockoe Bottom Performance to offer CrossFit to all of our participants every week.

Mental

Addiction is a brain disorder. In order to change addictive behavior, one must develop new patterns of thinking that support a healthy lifestyle. At Starfish Recovery & Wellness, our residents' mental health is prioritized. We offer yoga, breathwork, and other wellness activities to help develop new ways of coping with mental stress. We also work with clinical partners, creating a team approach to addressing the disease of addiction.

Social

Isolation and loneliness is considered an indicator, driver, or trigger for substance use disorder. Our program is designed to strengthen social relationships and promote community. We do this via promoting both internal and external togetherness. Shared experiences, especially those that teach a new skill or create a sense of team building and accomplishment, for example our yoga, CrossFit, or creative arts activities, promote camaraderie and encourage the development and maintenance of deep, long-lasting bonds. These bonds can prevent the isolation that often leads to substance use.

Educational

We have developed a curriculum that is aligned with the Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL's) for Health to empower and educate our residents not just about the disease of addiction, but with science driven coping and life management skills. Using a standard educational lesson plan model, this curriculum guides students to examine the root of their addiction and invites students to delve into practical strategies to further their personal recovery goals. Our goal is for our residents to further their lifelong pursuit of recovery, health, and wholeness by providing a solid educational foundation and the associated tools for wellness.

Five Pronged Approach

A+

Emotional

Identifying and managing your emotions, or "choosing how you feel" is a crucial skill for those in early recovery. Our mindfulness program provides our residents with training in focusing on the present moment without judgement. Over time, they develop a set of tools that allow them to bring their best selves to each moment and each day, regardless of the life challenges that arise. Our partnership with the InnerWork Center allows us to offer weekly mindfulness classes.

Physical

Exercise releases natural chemicals in the brain that increases focus, mood, and energy. In relation to addiction and recovery, studies show that CrossFit, specifically, creates a socially supportive environment, increases preference for and tolerance to exercise, and decreases depression and anxiety. The social support, the sense of community and belonging, and the teamwork CrossFit fosters are all keys to expediting our brain's healing process. We team with Shockoe Bottom Performance to offer CrossFit to all of our participants every week.

Mental

Addiction is a brain disorder. In order to change addictive behavior, one must develop new patterns of thinking that support a healthy lifestyle. At Starfish Recovery & Wellness, our residents' mental health is prioritized. We offer yoga, breathwork, and other wellness activities to help develop new ways of coping with mental stress. We also work with clinical partners, creating a team approach to addressing the disease of addiction.

Social

Isolation and loneliness is considered an indicator, driver, or trigger for substance use disorder. Our program is designed to strengthen social relationships and promote community. We do this via promoting both internal and external togetherness. Shared experiences, especially those that teach a new skill or create a sense of team building and accomplishment, for example our yoga, CrossFit, or creative arts activities, promote camaraderie and encourage the development and maintenance of deep, long-lasting bonds. These bonds can prevent the isolation that often leads to substance use.

Educational

We have developed a curriculum that is aligned with the Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL's) for Health to empower and educate our residents not just about the disease of addiction, but with science driven coping and life management skills. Using a standard educational lesson plan model, this curriculum guides students to examine the root of their addiction and invites students to delve into practical strategies to further their personal recovery goals. Our goal is for our residents to further their lifelong pursuit of recovery, health, and wholeness by providing a solid educational foundation and the associated tools for wellness.

FAQs

A typical day for a person in our intensive program includes a wellness or educational activity in the morning, clinical recovery groups or one-on-one services in the afternoon, and mutual aid recovery groups or wellness groups in the evening. Residents in our Step Down program are able to participate in our evening or weekend wellness groups, while maintaining employment or attending school and engaging in their recovery pathway.
YES. Starfish is able to offer same day admission based on space availability.
As a VARR-certified organization, our environment does not support the use of marijuana.
Friends and family often become frustrated when ultimatums, tough love, or interventions don’t work. What do 40 years of study and research show works? Kindness, positive reinforcement, and motivational and behavioral strategies. These strategies are explored in Beyond Addiction: How Science and Kindness Help People Change, and its companion guides for parents and partners.
“Court advocacy”, as it relates to recovery residences, is testimony given by a person in sustained recovery with the goal of securing release of a person suffering from SUD. Court advocacy for a person who has not been convicted of a crime can result in “pre-trial intervention” or a person being “bonded” or “mandated” to a specific recovery program. The court will order that the individual complete a program of a specific length and that the individual follow the rules and regulations of the program. If a person has already been convicted, or entered a guilty plea, the court can sentence the individual to a recovery program as an “alternative sentence”. Starfish Recovery & Wellness is well regarded in Central Virginia and the Middle Peninsula areas for its program and its work in the area of court advocacy.
YES. Starfish coordinates with local court systems to get enrollees placed into our programs. We offer “bed to bed” transfers to seamlessly get enrollees out of the system and into a safe, welcoming, sober environment.
YES. Enrollees have come to Starfish from all over the country including Maine, Florida, and Kentucky.
YES. Enrollees must adhere to standard recovery center rules and regulations including drug testing and curfews. Residents are overseen by a trained Recovery & Wellness Peer.
YES. Starfish accepts clients with co-occuring disorders, as long as they also suffer from Substance Use Disorder and are seeking assistance with SUD. Starfish provides coordination of clinical care, and if necessary, referrals to higher levels of care, including acute/inpatient settings.
Storywork is the process of transforming both our internal and external dialogue through journaling, focused breathing, and a strong emphasis on using productive language. The four-step Storywork process allows individuals to better integrate the hurtful experiences in our past and expel from our bodies the negative emotions that no longer serve us. Learn how to overcome soft talk, negations, projections, and the victim mentality by supercharging your affirmations, breathing better, and writing stuff down!
Our Recovery CrossFit Program was specifically designed to address the mental barriers that often affect those struggling with SUD. When we are pushed physically and go to our weakest point, what will we do? Pushing develops mental toughness, character, strength and integrity. Two studies (one American, one British) show that CrossFit creates a socially supportive environment, increases preference and tolerance to intense exercise, and decreases depression and anxiety. https://today.tamu.edu/2021/05/03/crossfit-and-addiction-recovery/ https://journals.rcni.com/.../substance-use-disorder.../abs
No, Starfish Recovery & Wellness does not offer detox, but we partner with a clinical provider to provide access to same-day medically supervised detoxification.
Dozens of studies have proven mindfulness reduces stress and anxiety, but did you know there are also multiple studies indicating that it is a powerful tool to assist in recovery from SUD? In an article for Greater Good Magazine, Dr. Sarah Bowen, a co-author of a leading study on Mindfulness Based Relapse Prevention, posited that "mindfulness is likely an effective tool in helping people with addiction because it’s a single, simple skill that a person can practice multiple times throughout their day, every day, regardless of the life challenges that arise." Click through to read about the science behind mindfulness: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3280682/ https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5907295/
At this time, Starfish does not accept health insurance. However, our facility accepts patients with insurance and assists them with coordination of care.

Blog Posts

What is a sound bath?
In general, a sound bath is a meditative experience where those in attendance are “bathed” in sound waves. These waves are produced by various sources, including healing instruments such as gongs, singing bowls, percussion, chimes, rattles, tuning forks, and even the human voice itself. More important than the what is the WHY? This meditative practice invokes the parasympathetic nervous system which slows the heart rate, lowers blood pressure and calms the brain and body. Sound baths can shift the brain from its beta wave, or normal consciousness, to the theta wave, or relaxed consciousness, to the delta wave, a state of deep relaxation where healing of the mind and body can occur. SUD can disrupt the brain's ability to shift into this state, so sound healing is an immensely helpful tool in the healing of the disease of addiction.
Recovery Means Connection
U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy recently declared loneliness an epidemic. In an interview with Quartz, Dr. Murthy and further stated "we will not solve the addiction problem in America if we don’t address social connection.” Deep, meaningful connections based on shared experiences are key to defeating the loneliness and isolation that can drive or trigger addictive patterns. How do we build those connections at Starfish? Our program is designed to strengthen social relationships and promote community. Shared experiences, especially those that teach a new skill or create a sense of team building and accomplishment, for example our yoga, CrossFit, or creative arts activities, promote camaraderie and encourage the development and maintenance of deep, long-lasting bonds.