How to Become a Professional Recovery Coach In Arkansas

Recovery coaching is a vital part of the addiction treatment process. These professionals provide peer support to individuals working towards a life of sobriety. A career as a recovery coach (also known as a peer recovery coach, a support or peer specialist, and recovery support worker) is perfect for people who want to help others overcome addiction and substance use in Arkansas.

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We will explore the steps to becoming a certified recovery coach in Arkansas, including the requirements, training programs, and certification options.

Whether you’ve had personal experience battling substance abuse or just want to help people overcome difficulties, becoming a certified peer recovery coach support worker can be a rewarding and fulfilling career path.

Training and Certification Requirements

To become a recovery coach in Arkansas, individuals must complete a state-approved certification program and pass a mandatory background check. This is standard for those entering recovery coaching in Arkansas to ensure that applicants have the necessary skills and no criminal record.

There are several educational choices for people who want to become recovery coaches or peer specialists in Arkansas. These include online courses, certification programs, and college training courses.

Recovery Coach Certification Arkansas

Aspiring recovery coaches and peer support workers have several certification alternatives available, including:

  • The Arkansas Association of Recovery Residences (AARR)
  • Arkansas Department of Human Services
  • Arkansas State Hospital
  • The Behavioral Health Institute

Conduct thorough research before deciding which route to take. Make sure you choose the certification body that meets your needs best. A few things to take into account are:

  • The degree of help offered to individuals during certification
  • The cost of certification
  • Ongoing education requirements
  • The authority and reputation of the certifying organization

Once you have selected a certification organization, start putting together your application. The National Certified Peer Recovery Support Specialist (NCPRSS) requirements are detailed below.

Application Requirements

To become an NCPRSS you must satisfy specific education and experience prerequisites, including passing a certification exam. Requirements that all applicants must meet include:

  • Every applicant must supply a copy of their GED, high school diploma, or transcript.
  • Applicants or participants must certify that they have been recovering from substance use for a minimum of two years.
  • Applicants must prove they have undergone 60 complete contact and training hours (CEs) of peer recovery-focused instruction.
  • Each participant’s supervisor must certify they have at least 200 complete hours of direct training in a recovery assistance setting.
  • Every applicant must provide two references, at least one of which must be from a professional.
  • There must be signed proof that the candidate has read and abides by the NAADAC ethical standards.

Taking the National Certified Recovery Specialist Exam

You must pass the National Certified Recovery Specialist test to get your certification before working as a recovery coach or support specialist. Even before you take the test, however, you must satisfy certain conditions. The National Association of Recovery Residences sets the requirements, which include the following:

  • Completion of an approved NCRS training program
  • Passing a background check without any felony convictions
  • Adhering to ethical and professional standards
  • Accumulating at least 1000 hours of hands-on experience in the field

The NCRS exam is a computer-based test consisting of multiple-choice questions. It tests candidates on rehabilitation principles, ethics, boundaries, and recovery-oriented care systems.

Ongoing Education

Recovery and rehabilitation coaches require ongoing education. This is to keep your knowledge and skills up to date. Addiction professionals have various educational opportunities available to them, including:

  • Attending workshops and conferences
  • Taking training courses
  • Participating in online classes
  • Reading professional journals
  • Engaging with peer mentoring and supervision

Working as a Recovery Coach

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment opportunities are rising in sectors like counseling for drug misuse and psychological or behavioral disorders. In Arkansas, the demand for addiction professionals, like peer recovery coaches, is growing faster than the national average.

Over the following ten years, we expect a growth of roughly 23%. This is an excellent prediction for rehabilitation and peer specialists in the state, who often make in excess of $40,000 a year. Rehabilitation coaches’ earning potential and employment prospects in Arkansas vary depending on the location and role.

The earning potential of a recovery coach or peer support worker depends on several factors, including:

  • Degree of education
  • Certification
  • Years of experience
  • Where they work

Arkansas is experiencing a rise in demand for recovery coaches and similar support workers. The rise is due to the growing need for substance abuse and addiction treatment services.

Let’s examine the employment opportunities available to peer recovery coaches in various sectors.

Outpatient mental health and substance abuse centers

The majority of coaches find work in outpatient mental health and substance abuse centers. At these centers, they provide peer recovery on a non-residential basis.

Individual and family services

The second largest percentage of coaches provide independent services. They consult in private with individuals or provide a counseling service for families.

Hospitals (state, local and private)

The third largest distribution of coaches are employed in various hospitals throughout Arkansas. They provide peer recovery to patients in need of such service.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are recovery support services?

The term refers to a range of non-clinical services. They were designed to assist individuals in maintaining and strengthening their recovery from substance use and abuse or mental illness.

What’s the difference between a peer recovery coach and a therapist?

Peer recovery coaches help individuals to maintain long-term sobriety and well-being. Therapists are licensed to provide psychological counseling to people with mental health issues. The term “therapist” generally refers to someone with a master’s or doctoral degree in psychology.


Becoming a certified peer recovery coach in Arkansas is a great way to help individuals achieve long-term recovery. With the proper training and certification, you’ll be equipped with the skills needed to join the league of recovery support professionals worldwide.

Whether you’re new to the field or looking to further your career, becoming a certified peer recovery worker or coach is a worthwhile investment – not only in your career but for your personal growth.