“House of Hope Serbia”
Therapeutic Community - community based treatment of (drug) addiction -
The Therapeutic Community is an environment that helps people while they are helping others. (F.B. Perfas, 2003)
Foundation of House of Hope Serbia •
We recognized the need for a humanistic
support for drug users in Serbia and their rehabilitation in society • Model of Therapeutic Community (TC): because of its treatment and cost efficiency, sustainability, humanity and flexibility regarding therapeutic methods • Collaboration of a group of professionals from the Netherlands and Serbia
Project Group ‘House of Hope’ Darko Cvetic (NL/SRB): Former Resident of TC; Health Caretaker Lineke van Hal (NL): Medical Anthropologist; PhD-candidate in Health Sciences Anna Maria Brassé (NL): Communication Expert; Advisor International Public Health Projects Jelena Zulevic (SRB): Constructivist Psychotherapist; Trainer self-help groups Hatta Smit (NL): Sociotherapist in Dutch TC; Trainer Adriaan Korver (NL): Medical Doctor; Director Public Health NGO ‘Yanos’
What is Therapeutic Community?
A participative, community-based approach to different types of addiction. Foster individual change and promote positive growth, by changing an individual’s lifestyle through a community of committed people working together to help themselves and each other.
TC’s are residential settings. Residents are encouraged to take responsibility for themselves and others within the community.
Peer influence, mediated through group processes, is used to help individuals to learn and assimilate social norms and develop more effective social skills.
Methodology of TC •
TC’s differ from other treatment approaches principally in their use of the community, comprising both treatment staff and residents as key agents of change. This is based on “mutual self-help”. TC members interact in structured and unstructured ways to influence attitudes, perceptions, and behaviors associated with drug use. Includes different activities combined with unstructured interactions with peers → “community as method” TC’s methods are not focused on medical aspects of addiction but on a person as a whole (however, there is cooperation with medical professionals when needed).
Efficiency of TC’s •
Research on TC’s from National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), U.S. Department of Health: Those who successfully completed treatment in a TC had: lower levels of cocaine, heroin, and alcohol use; lower levels of criminal behavior; lower levels of unemployment; and lower levels of indicators of depression than before treatment. Drug Abuse Treatment Outcome Study (DATOS, 1991 - 1993) showed:
In Netherlands: 1/3 never uses drugs again; 1/3 recidivises (usually not with “hard” drugs); 1/3 is difficult to be helped
What is so special about our model of TC? •
Over 40 years it is successfully implemented around the world: it is a well known and recognized method, with clear rules and principles of work. It is not based on any religion and focuses on inclusion Integrative focus: The approach is not medical, but medical issues are considered important so our residents won’t be brought into danger by lack of medical care Work and vocational training are important parts of the therapeutic process. The residents will contribute (economically) to local community through volunteer work, and they will be trained to find jobs.
What do we want to achieve with the project? •
Establishment of TC (location with basic furniture) Training of therapists • • •
Post-graduate training in drug addiction Introduction into philosophy of TC’s Management training to run the TC
Involvement of local community (incl. recruitment of clients)
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www.houseofhopeserbia.com www.therapeuticcommunities.org www.therapeuticcommunitiesofamerica.org www.daytop.org