Recovery Innovation Challenge

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), introduces its inaugural Recovery Innovation Challenge. This behavioral health challenge aims to identify recovery-advancing innovations developed by peer-run or community-based organizations and entities such as local or state governments, health systems, hospitals, or health plans that may partner with them.

Recovery is defined by SAMHSA as “a process of change through which individuals improve their health and wellness, live self-directed lives, and strive to reach their full potential.”

As part of this challenge, participants are encouraged to share details about the practices they are using to advance recovery and demonstrate how these practices have:

  1. Expanded upon SAMHSA’s definition of recovery.
  2. Helped them overcome challenges in incorporating recovery into their behavioral health services or systems.

SAMHSA is using the Recovery Innovation Challenge to directly engage with a larger and more diverse number of organizations, including groups providing recovery services and supports at all levels in the continuum of care for behavioral health.


  • The Recovery Innovation Challenge began May 18, 2022.
  • The deadline for submission is July 15, 2022.
  • The judging period takes place from July 15, 2022, to August 5, 2022.
  • Finalists will be announced August 6, 2022.
  • Finalists must give presentations September 2–9, 2022, to a panel of judges.
  • Awards will be announced in October 2022.

The purse prize is up to $400,000. The competition will offer up to 10 awards, depending on the overall scores from the judges.

All submission materials must be submitted through the SAMHSA Recovery Innovation Challenge page on the >< website.

For more information, view SAMHSA’s Recovery Innovation Challenge webpage.

Questions regarding the challenge should be emailed to

Media inquiries should be emailed to


“SAMHSA’s Recovery Innovation Challenge will allow us to learn from the recovery service community about tools and techniques they’re using at the state and local level that need to be scaled nationwide.”
–Xavier Becerra, HHS Secretary

“We are excited to introduce SAMHSA’s first-ever Recovery Innovation Challenge and are eager to give voice to those doing innovative work in this space. By using this vehicle, we hope to gain a better understanding of effective and innovative recovery practices from a very diverse field. We aim to take what works for a small group and scale up to a larger population.”
–Miriam E. Delphin-Rittmon, PhD, HHS Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use and the Administrator of SAMHSA