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Marist community Badajoz

12/02/2010: Spain

The Marist community of Badajoz has been collaborating with the programme for treatment of addictive behaviour of the diocesan Cáritas (Project Life) for the last fifteen years. During all this time, the treatment process has been evolving as the profiles of drug users change. The brothers involved in this work have been witnesses and agents of each of the new ways undertaken in the field of treatment.

At present, two Brothers are driving and collaborating in programmes which are open to the participation of minors and their families, aiming to unite the experience of treatment of addiction and family therapy. The goal is to provide effective help to families in the educational process of adolescent sons who are entering on risky behavior, as well as to encourage the adolescent to change his way of life. The different areas of work are the following:

a) Program in collaboration with the Youth Offenders Office to advise, in the difficult task of education, families who for the first time are faced with a judicial problem caused by a minor and who are at a loss at how to respond. This is a educational-therapeutic intervention directed to and accepted by the minor and his family as an extrajudicial measure.

b) Program of intervention in drug dependency with youthful offenders, in the same Centre of Juvenile Reform (a centre of internment for minors who are serving a judicial sentence in an enclosed and semi-open regime). This is an intervention in the Reform Centre which is intended as treatment and prevention against minors reverting to addictive and/or delinquent behaviour. We also participate with the families.

c) Program of prevention in the district of Gurugú. This concerns a pilot experiment of Cáritas in the selective prevention of drug dependency, adapted to the characteristics of a district of preferential care. The activities carried out are: Schools for Fathers in institutes, colleges, and neighbourhood associations, preventive guidance with adolescents in the educational centres of the zone, therapeutic care of families in the same district, and formation of volunteers in leisure and spare time activities.

d) Program of general prevention for adolescents in school in institutes or colleges. We do this in the mobile centre of treatment of Project Life, and it consists of running workshops which show the different educational-therapeutic procedures in the process of drug rehabilitation. They are presented in a practical form with the aim of reinforcing the youth’s decision for a healthy and drug-free life. This program has been operating for three courses and is in high demand.

All these programs are supported by the Specialist Secretariate for Drug dependency of the government of Extremadura and co-ordinated with the institutions with which we work.

As a Marist community we feel impelled towards the future, committed to the needs of children and young people, and ready to undertake new ways of education to improve the quality of life and social values of adolescents and young people in situations of risk. In this mission, we wager and count on the collaboration of the families, taking into account that in many cases they are victims of unfortunate situations with their own sons, but that, at the same time, their work is indispensable.

Marist Community of Badajoz

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