Keep reading to learn more about Peer Recovery Coaches—who we are, where we work, trainings, and answers to frequently asked questions.

Who are Peer Recovery Coaches?

A Peer Recovery Coach (PRC) is an individual with lived experience of substance misuse who is living well in recovery. A Peer Recovery Coach uses their lived experience and recovery story to instill hope. They discuss recovery issues from a peer perspective and support other peers in reaching and maintaining their own personal recovery goals. In addition, a PRC may serve as an advocate, guide peers on accessing resources, and model competency in recovery and wellness. Peer Recovery Coaches promote skills for improving mental and physical wellbeing and increasing resiliency. They promote self-determination, recognize there are multiple pathways of recovery, and help peers become and stay engaged in their own recovery.

Where do Peer Recovery Coaches work?

Peer Recovery Coaches are employed in substance use treatment facilities, social service agencies, peer-run recovery centers, peer-run respites, community-based organizations, hospitals, prisons, law enforcement agencies, mobile crisis teams, and other healthcare organizations. Peer Recovery Coaches may also serve on a variety of advisory boards and committees at local, state, and national levels. 

Peer Recovery Coach (PRC) Trainings

To apply for this training, you must:

  • be at least 18 years old,
  • have a GED or high school diploma,
  • have had a substance use disorder, and
  • be currently living well in recovery.

If you previously completed the Peer Support Specialist (PSS) or the Peer Recovery Coach (PRC) training in Iowa, you are not eligible for this training. Both peer specialist training and peer recovery coach training can be used to seek certification through the Iowa Board of Certification. For this reason and because of high training demand, it is our policy that you can only take ONE training through IPWC, either PSS or PRC.

The Iowa Peer Workforce Collaborative uses the Connecticut Community for Addiction Recovery (CCAR) curriculum. The Connecticut Community for Addiction Recovery (CCAR) Curriculum includes 4 hours of virtual learning (via Zoom) as a group and 2 hours of individual study each day (1 week, Monday-Friday).

Peer Recovery Coach Training May 2024


Registration for this training is closed.

Virtual Training 

May 13 - 17, 2024 (1:00 p.m.  - 5:00 p.m. Central)


Via Zoom

Peer Recovery Coach Training August 2024


Applications for PRC August 2024 training will open at noon on July 1st. At that time, an application link will be posted here. 

Virtual Training 

August 12 - 16, 2024 (4:00 p.m.  - 8:00 p.m. Central)


Via Zoom

Peer Recovery Coach Training October 2024


Registration details will be posted here soon. Thank you for your patience. 

Virtual Training 

October 7 - 11, 2024 (Time To Be Determined)


Via Zoom

Training Details

You must arrange and pay for your own lodging (if applicable). If you are currently employed as a Peer Recovery Coach, check with your employer about covering these expenses.

This training is FREE, however, trainees must pay for their own lodging, food and travel costs. If you are currently employed as a Peer Recovery Coach, check with your employer about covering these expenses.

You must make arrangements for your own food. There are many food options near the training sites. Most training locations do not allow outside food to be brought into the venue.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this training, please contact us at 319-467-4288 or 319-467-4296 or email us at

Peer Recovery Coach FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

You must have a high school diploma or GED.

The training will provide you with in-depth knowledge and skills. However, in general the role involves the ability to:

  • Model effective coping and self-help techniques.
  • Work with individuals from diverse socio economic and cultural backgrounds.
  • Attend workplace meetings and complete agency requirements.
  • Assist people with finding community and natural supports and teaching them how to utilize these services.
  • Advocate for someone’s needs and accompany them to meetings as needed.
  • Work as a member of an interdisciplinary team focusing on each person’s choices for recovery.
  • Communicate effectively both verbally and in writing.
  • Adhere to confidentiality and understand protected health information.
  • Maintain records and provide accurate documentation.
  • Use computers (e.g. basic computer skills-email, web searches, word processing).
  • Maintain a part-time or full-time work schedule.
  • Share your own personal story of living in recovery.

You must be 18 years of age to take Peer Recovery Coach training.

When applications are open there will be a link above to click and apply for Peer Recovery Coach Training.

  • Applications will be screened when the application process closes.
  • At this time, Peer Recovery Coach training is being prioritized for individuals currently employed as a PRC. Those with a pending employment opportunity will also be considered.
  • Training acceptance notifications will be sent via email. Applicants can expect to receive a notification around 4 weeks before the start of training. 

For questions, please email us at

Pathways To Become a Certified Peer Recovery Specialist

Peer Support Specialist Training

In-person training: 40 hours


Ethics training: 6 hours

= 46 hours of training approved by IBC
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Peer Recovery Coach Training

Recovery Coach Academy: 30 hours


Ethical Considerations for Recovery Coaches:16 hours

= 46 hours of training approved by IBC
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Iowa Board of Certification Requirements

Supervision hours
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Peer Recovery Specialist


Certified Peer Recovery Specialist (PRS) Requirements

Peer Recovery Specialist (PRS) certification is administered by the Iowa Board of Certification (IBC). For detailed information, please refer to the Certified Peer Recovery Specialist (PRS) Handbook and PRS Application at If you have questions about certification, contact the IBC office at 515-965-5509 or email

Application For Certification

Experience and Supervision Requirements

  • A minimum of 500 hours of work/practicum/volunteer experience.
  • A minimum of 25 hours of face-to-face supervision.

Questions? Contact the IBC office at 515-965-5509 or email