Addiction is defined as a chronic, relapsing brain disease that affects both the brain and behavior.

Science has identified biological, environmental, and genetic variations all of which contribute to the development and progression of this disease. Addiction is known to change the structures of the brain including the cortex, limbic system, and brain stem.

Addiction impacts all life-sustaining functions, creating and driving the compulsive use of substances despite the negative consequences that accompany this disease. Compulsive use changes how brain structures interact with one another, impacting decision making, impulse control, and emotional regulation.

Although a chronic condition, with the help of evidence-based interventions, individuals can manage substance use disorders (SUDs) and resume productive lives in recovery.

Abou successful rehab and successful recoveryWhen we say Sanford is a place where “town and country meet,” we are expressing our philosophy and our mission. We believe that recovery from addiction includes education and more importantly, self-exploration. Because we understand you are the expert of your own experience. We also believe that recovery is an opportunity to rekindle previous interests, as well as generate newfound enjoyments.

All of the Sanford facilities are uniquely situated to provide an urban experience, near many “real life” downtown locations. And we are also close to numerous parks and walking trails. These natural, out-of-doors backdrops give practical application to our evidence-based treatment programs. Here you are not hidden away, but in the safety of treatment, you are given small doses of exposure to what will be the rest of your life in recovery. And the nearness of our treatment centers to residential neighborhoods goes a long way to dispelling negative stereotypes about how those with the disease of addiction behave. 


The Guiding Principles of Sanford Addiction Treatment Centers (Sanford)

Private women's drug and alcohol treatment

The entrance to Sanford House at Cherry Street for Women

The Sanford Environment

Treatment begins in a particular place. There are many options for addiction treatment and we encourage you to find a location that suits your expectations and your lifestyle. In the same way hospitals have learned that healing happens best in an aesthetically pleasing environment, addiction treatment works best if you feel comfortable and safe. And a pleasing environment can contribute toward reducing stress, promoting self-care, and serve as a vehicle to healing.

Sanford House at Cherry Street for Women and Sanford House at John Street for Men are both historic homes on tree-lined, residential streets in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The houses accommodate ten and twenty clients respectively for residential treatment. We are privately held and offer an environment that is homelike, intimate and decidedly non-institutional. Because of this, we are able to focus on personalized, individual client care.

Our staff of addiction professionals promises state of the art, clinical therapies. Similarly, our wellness team creates engaging activities and robust physical excursions. We take into consideration all our client’s needs, and help them explore new enthusiasms such as: acupuncture (during COVID-19 acupuncture is suspended), hiking, art therapy and weight training. We also provide a forum to express and renew previous passions. Sanford treats adult men and women (over the age of 18) separately.

At Sanford, we treat the whole person with respect and dignity. Every voice is heard. We are located in the Midwest and our Midwestern values are key to our many treatment successes. We instill a strong work ethic that comes in handy when the “going gets tough”. And modest integrity and the desire to help others are hallmarks of successful recovery from addiction.

Individualized Treatment and Integrated Therapies

We believe there are many paths to recovery. Just as each client is unique, every recovery is unique. And because we are not bogged down by bureaucracy, we are able to adapt our program to fit each client. We seek to find the inherent value and strength in each individual. Our clinicians focus on resolving the underlying issues that often cause substance use, such as trauma, unhealthy relationships and isolation. We also treat addiction and mental health at the same time. And we begin to uncover those things that make you, YOU. The result is not only a life free of addiction, but the ability to re-engage in the world with hope, enthusiasm and full contact.

Safe, Effective Treatment

Sanford House addresses a full range of needs: medical, psychological, spiritual and social. You will hear the phrase “evidence-based treatment” as you begin your research into addiction treatment facilities. “Evidence-based treatment” relies on scientific evidence and documented research. At Sanford House, we utilize the best available research, clinical expertise and proven treatment models. Sanford House is an evidence-based treatment center. Our program incorporates 12-step methodology, whole-body wellness and the vital role of the family in its approach to treatment.


We offer the following options for alcohol and other drug addiction treatment:

Every program at Sanford includes: assessment, treatment planning, individual and group counseling, psychoeducation, and drug and alcohol screening. Programs also include community involvement, early recovery support and wellness healing. Wellness healing includes: healthy nutrition, movement, spiritual exploration and creative expression. And our staff promises to help you determine your appropriate level of care.

Life after drug and alcohol addiction

Sanford Outpatient Center

Sanford understands that people in different stages of the recovery process need different levels of care. Our Outpatient Center provides a confidential place for those who are inspired to get and stay sober but may not be appropriate for Residential Treatment.

An Intensive Outpatient Program, often called “IOP”, is designed to provide treatment for alcohol or other drug misuse on a part time, non-residential basis. An IOP Program has many of the intensive aspects of a Residential Program, including group therapy and homework assignments. IOP helps to establish the foundation for long term recovery.

The Partial Hospitalization Program, often called “PHP” is appropriate for those who need more structure and services than our IOP program provides. PHP treatment takes place for longer blocks of time. Each PHP client participates in an individualized recovery program consisting of two stages of treatment: treatment engagement and early recovery.

Sanford Virtual Addiction Treatment, or telehealth, offers the same evidence-based practices that our in-person programs provide, but in the comfort and safety of home. Classes are conducted by “video-chat” technology using smartphones or computers. Virtual outpatient treatment is real-time with a master’s level clinician as facilitator. Programs offered are: Medication-Assisted Treatment; Day Treatment; Intensive Outpatient Programs; Outpatient Programs; Alumni and Family Programs; and one-on-one and family counseling.

Residential Treatment

Residential Treatment means you live at Sanford House for a period of time – our comprehensive programs often take place over four weeks or longer. This arrangement provides a structured environment in which to recover. It is often beneficial to leave what might be a “triggering” environment, and residential treatment gives you an extended period of time to focus on your needs and your sobriety. Our residential program also offers monitoring of medication and medical issues. Medically Assisted Treatment (MAT) combines behavioral therapy and medications to treat substance use disorders. Residential Treatment is the most comprehensive approach to recovery and it is critical to stay in treatment long enough to establish successful results.


Gender Specific Treatment

At Sanford, our addiction treatment programs are geared toward men and women separately. Often called “gender specific treatment,” it means we do not have co-ed facilities. When we separate clients by gender, men learn about recovery alongside other men, and women work with other women. Our clients tell us that when they participate in gender-specific therapy groups, it allows them to discuss sensitive and personal issues they may not feel comfortable sharing with the opposite gender. Women and men’s paths to addiction are different. They experience and recover from addiction differently. In that regard, issues such as communication, friendships, family responsibilities, trust and intimacy are all influenced by gender. Sanford’s LGBTQ+ Integrated Addiction Treatment provides a safe space to discuss and affirm sexuality, gender identity and their parallels to substance misuse.



An “Excursion” and rigorous hike at Saugatuck Dunes State Park



Our clients work hard for their recovery. And they participate in all manner of science-based group therapy. They have rigorous individual sessions with their counselors. On any given day, our clients may plumb the inner-workings of their family systems and relationships; study brain chemistry; participate in art therapy; have an acupuncture session; and go to an outside 12-step meeting. They might listen to a lecture on “relapse triggers”, read an assignment and write in their journals. Our clients are busy and diligent, committed to sobriety and a new life in recovery.

So, when it comes to our philosophy about downtime and extra-curricular “Excursions,” we are always looking for interesting, town and country ideas to spark previous passions. Or to fire up a brand new activity our clients can experience in the safety of treatment. Often, one of our excursions will rekindle a yen for an activity a client used to enjoy or serve as an awakening. At all the Sanford facilities we educate our clients that sober, passionate involvement is one of the keys to successful long term recovery. And we have found that some of the best learning happens during recreational experiences.


Healthy Nutrition

Alcohol, cocaine, Vicodin, marijuana and other drugs, cause a host of problems in the body. And not the least of which is nutrition. Alcohol impedes nutritional breakdown, stimulants suppress the appetite altogether and opiates cause stomach issues – especially during withdrawal.  Some drugs cause you to eat too much, others too little. A person who is suffering from active addiction is unlikely to eat healthily or prepare a well-balanced meal. In fact, many of our clients say they “used to enjoy” cooking. And let’s face it, “the munchies” almost always include fatty foods or vending machine fare: those “treats” designed to boost dopamine levels.

One of the primary purposes of early recovery is relearning self-care. Redefining “comfort food” with fresh, whole, garden-to-table options and plenty of greens are what the doctor (and the Sanford house chef) recommend. Rich foods are okay every once in a while, like a creamed soup on a cold winter’s night, but off-the-vine fruits and vegetables and lean meats and fish are best for long term good health.


The Family Program

Family members can be powerful allies in recovery.  And at Sanford House, we want to be there for the entire family. We believe family involvement is one of the most important components for a successful treatment experience. Clients are encouraged to invite family members to their individual therapy sessions. And The Family Program is designed to educate your loved ones about the disease of addiction and encourage positive communication.




Accreditation, Credentials and Licenses


Sanford House is licensed by the state of Michigan and accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF). CARF provides accreditation services worldwide at the request of health and human service providers. CARF says, “Whether you are seeking rehabilitation for a disability, treatment for addiction and substance abuse, home and community services, retirement living, or other health and human services, you can have confidence in your choice. Providers that meet our standards have demonstrated their commitment to being among the best available.”

Credentials and licenses also ensure that the person or persons providing your treatment meets nationally recognized standards for professional practice.  All of our counselors are Master’s Degree level clinicians and many hold multiple licenses. Some of the credentials held by our professionals include CAADC (Certified Advanced Addiction Counselor), CAC (Certified Addiction Counselor), CCS (Certified Clinical Supervisor), RN (Registered Nurse); MSN (Master’s in Nursing) and LMFT (Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. Our interdisciplinary team also consists of a physician, social workers, and Licensed Professional Counselors.


Insurance and Payment Help

You deserve your insurance benefits and we are ready to help you get them. Since one of the most complicated parts of entering treatment can be trying to understand financing coverage, our team of admissions professionals works with your insurance providers to see that you get the best possible coverage. This means we speak to your insurance companies for you, and translate the information they give us into understandable language. 

We have worked with the following insurance companies and more. Coverage is subject to the terms of each individual’s insurance plan. We accept most private insurance; however, Medicaid does not participate with our program.

Aetna; ASR health benefits; BlueCross BlueShield; Cigna; Cofinity; First Health; Health Alliance Plan (HAP); Humana; Magellan Health Services; McLaren; Molina; One Beacon; Physicians Health Plan; United Health Care.


For a free and confidential insurance verification to determine your benefits and appropriate level of care, call us now.




The front hallway – Sanford House at John Street for Men

Support After Treatment

The right aftercare plan is crucial to the success of the newly sober person. Because aftercare bridges the space between what is learned in treatment and “the real world”. Often, as clients plan to return home they recognize people, places or things in their environment that present potential risk. For this reason, Sanford House staff works to advocate for our clients. We consider their circumstances and assist them in finding sober living, sponsorship and safety in early recovery. The Sanford House aftercare plan is personalized and addresses emotional triggers, appropriate resources and a lasting connection to the resources gleaned during  treatment. Our intent is to partner with our clients. To plan a life of recovery that taps their inherent strength and feels meaningful, manageable and realistic to them.


Sanford Addiction Treatment Centers Locations:

Sanford House at Cherry Street for Women
540 Cherry Street SE
Grand Rapids, Michigan 49503
(616) 288.6970

Sanford House at John Street for Men
221 John Street NE
Grand Rapids, Michigan 49503
(616) 214.8517

Sanford Outpatient Center – addiction treatment
233 Fulton Street E Suite 101
Grand Rapids, Michigan 49503
(616) 425.5523

Sanford House Admissions & Outreach Center
74 Lafayette Avenue NE
Grand Rapids, Michigan 49503
(616) 552.1641