SMART Recovery Australia

SMART Family & Friends Facilitator Training

Now available 100% online


A better approach to working with the supporters of people with behaviours of concern

SMART Family and Friends is an evidence-led group intervention offering an entirely new collaborative approach to supporting family and friends in Australia to manage their diverse, complex and challenging needs. By better understanding which elements of strengths-based mutual aid work best for supporters, you can encourage participants attending your group to build confidence in making the changes that will enable them to take control of their own behaviour and improve their own quality of life. 

The program provides you with the practical strategies to help supporters cope, stay safe, seek support, problem solve and increase their own strengths and resilience.

Training date

July 7th & 8th

4 x Zoom sessions: 10am -12:30pm + 2pm - 4:30pm, both days​

Book today - limited to only 8 people

Course description

SMART Family and Friends Facilitator Training builds on your core competencies as a SMART Recovery Facilitator. For this reason, you will need to have completed SMART Recovery Facilitator Training and have facilitated or co-facilitated a SMART group to register for this training.

This training will provide you with the knowledge and practical skills required to confidently and competently facilitate SMART Recovery Australia’s award-winning SMART Family & Friends program. 

You will learn how to run the SMART Family & Friends program in two key formats:

  • Video conference support meetings, so you can get started immediately
  • In person support meetings, for when it is safe to do so. 

We’re specifically looking to work with facilitators who intend to start running a group for Family and Friends online. The training will also enable you to transition your group to face-to-face should you wish to, down the track.

This will be an intimate training event (8 people max.) delivered via Zoom in 4 X 2.5 hour blocks, over 2 days. The sessions with will hosted by National Program Managers, Josette Freeman and Dr Angela Argent. 

The training course that will teach you to empower supporters of people with problematic behaviours, including:

  • How to challenge unhelpful and self-defeating behaviours
  • How to incorporate SMART Recovery tools and techniques, including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and Motivational Interviewing
  • Key program pillars including self-care, setting boundaries, assertive communication, problem solving and others.
What's included?

Training inclusions

  • SMART Family & Friends Facilitator Training Online – 4 x 2.5 hr zoom workshops over 2 days
  • Free access to Online SMART Recovery Facilitator Training! (6hr eLearning course) (valued at $390, refresh your learning prior to attending)
  • Hardcopy of SMART Family & Friends Facilitator Handbook (to be worked through prior to attending)
  • 12 Months Professional Zoom Licence (to enable you to run your SMART Family and Friends group online).


Register and pay before June 8 to recieve:

Early bird special
$ 408 All prices Excluding GST

Other information

Unlike other family and supporters’ programs, the sole aim of SMART Family and Friends is to improve the quality of life, coping skills, and support system of the supporter of the person with the behaviour of concern. The aim is not to mobilise participants to get the person they support into treatment, or to do anything at all. The program is about enabling the supporter to regain control of their own lives.

SMART Family and Friends draws influence from Jim Orford, Richard Velleman, Alex Copello and Lorna Templeton’s Stress – Strain – Coping Support Model of Addiction and Family. This strengths-based model recognises that supporters are ordinary people living with a highly stressful situation not of their own making. The stress the supporters experience leads to strain, including physical and psychological symptoms and suffering. The amount of strain experienced by the supporters is influenced by how well the supporters cope and what and how much social support they can access.

This program and its ongoing evaluation will contribute to growing a richer understanding of the importance of mutual aid psycho-education in stimulating pro-active and reflective conversations about change for family, friends and supporters.

SMART Family and Friends offers important and novel implications for the future of supporter-empowering brief psycho-education intervention across the AOD and mental health sectors.

Working video conference capabilities
Desktop computer, laptop or tablet with built in (or external) web cam and mic

Windows users:
Microsoft Windows 7 or higher (Windows 8 recommended)
1 Ghz or faster processer (2GHz recommended)

Mac OS users:
Mac OSX v10.5 or higher (Mac OSX v10.6 recommended)
1 Ghz or faster processer (2GHz recommended)

Meet your trainers

Josette Freeman

National Program Manager

angela argent

Dr Angela Argent

National Program Manager

daniel raffell, smart recovery asutralia

Daniel Raffell

National Program Manager

Supporting a loved one as they deal with problematic behaviour can be one of life’s toughest experiences. Many of us feel very isolated and lack coping skills.
SMART Family and Friends groups are very much appreciated by those who attend – the mutual support, tips and tools, focus on self care and planning can make a real difference to supporters.
We definitely need more SMART Family and Friends groups in Australia (and around the world) so please train and join us.

Clare Bower

SMART Recovery Australia Board Member and SMART Family and Friends Online Facilitator

What people say

"Thoroughly enjoyed the training. Josette you are amazing and very supportive!"
Oydessy House Auckland
"It’s a great way for clinical services to assist people to get back on their feet while fully recognising their autonomy and meeting people where they’re at."
Dr. Alex Wodak AM
Emeritus Consultant, Alcohol and Drug Service, St Vincent's Hospital
"SMART offers a non-judgmental and supportive environment for participants to gain mutual support and develop strategies to help them achieve their chosen behaviour change goal/s."
Jody Wright
Executive Director Drug ARM

Some of our partners

SMART Recovery Australia works with leading alcohol and other drugs and mental health services
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