On Wednesday 23rd July 2014, four staff members and SHAFA’s director went along to Delhi University to present a short discourse regarding the efficacy of ‘the Therapeutic Community model of treatment’ and how SHAFA HOME generates social awareness of the disease of addiction offering much needed support and guidance to addicts and their families. The event was effectively a chance for SHAFA HOME to give necessary knowledge and insight to the audience of 50 social work students from India and USA. The event spanned the course of the day in which separate speakers came to give their two cents on different psychological problems and the integral role of counselling within successful treatment programmes.
As the day progressed and different speakers took to the floor to lead the never-ending discussion down different tangents of thought, it slowly got round to SHAFA’s turn to present a well constructed and totally knock-out discourse regarding our alternative to the mainstream approach of tackling addiction problems. Our staff members introduced themselves and leaped into action by explain the different components that comprise the Therapeutic Community and how it allows the individual to disassociate from their deep-rooted beliefs to transform their self-harming behaviours into sensible and self-preserving conduct.
The Delhi University students were deeply engaged by the presentation and even got a chance to watch some of our documentary videos regarding treatment. Judging by the looks on the faces of many it seemed that they did not expect such a conscientious and reliable supportive force from an NGO in the fight against drugs. People were impressed and inquisitive as to how SHAFA places primary emphasis on behavioural change rather than on only abstinence from substance. The resounding answer? That recovery lies in a total personality and behavioural shift accomplished by hands-on action rather than empty words promising change.
SHAFA staff answered the students’ other pressing questions regarding the day’s discourse. Topics dissected by our most senior social worker Ms. Sangeeta and the director included the complex and abnormal cognitive processing within the addict and how faulty thinking is healed and normalised over time by peer-to-peer therapy. The students’ participation and captivated expression gave us hope that our time invested in the event was a fabulous success.
Our staff went home quietly triumphant and wholly contented with the outcome of the day’s event. We feel it was a true blessing to have shared our humble message of hope, strength and unity in the struggle to save countless souls from sinking further into the misery of addiction. We thank our facilitators at Delhi University for inviting us along to this smashing occasion.
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