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At the core of DARE Network’s work are our treatment programs. DARE serves people who are primarily addicted to alcohol, methamphetamines, marijuana, opium and tobacco. DARE Network workers treat the addiction not the particular chemical.
Through self-referral and the Community Coordinated Treatment interventions program, people come to one of three treatment programs: Day Program, Residential Program, Combination Program.
After an initial assessment clients are enrolled in one of the three programs and progress through four phases:
Detoxification: During this phase, trained addiction workers administer auricular acupuncture, traditional massage, Burmese herbal medicine and herbal saunas to help clients manage their withdrawal symptoms.
Recovery: This phase of treatment teaches clients about self-care and positive coping mechanisms. Through nutrition, sleep, and exercise, clients are able to "reset" their body systems. At this point in the treatment, clients are learning how to rebuild their relationships with family and the community. Through culturally appropriate therapies and counselling clients share their experiences, feelings, fears and hopes to help each other, with the guidance of the DARE addiction workers.
Education: During this phase of treatment, clients learn about the causes of addiction and how to prevent addiction relapses. HIV/AIDS and Gender Based Violence prevention education is also a key component of the treatment..
Reintegration: Before clients return to their lives and families, we work to make sure that they are ready for reunification. Through family meetings and the development of support systems, we ensure that the client’s transition back is planned for on-going recovery.
In 2006, we developed Community Coordinated Treatment interventions in collaboration with refugee camp leadership. This intervention enables Camp Committees, Security and Section Leaders to refer individuals who may be substance addicted and who have engaged in violence, public disturbance, or other security issues to DARE Network for treatment rather than for punishment. We have observed that with the support of family members, many people readily choose treatment.
Since DARE Network began providing treatment for the refugee and migrant populations, we have worked to ensure that relapse remains minimal.
Our relapse prevention includes follow-up workshops, individual meetings, and peer support groups with clients and their families.
Clients who have successfully recovered for a year are encouraged to participate in DARE's prevention education programs and some even become Addiction Workers themselves.
Through these activities we are both helping our clients to remain substance free while strengthening the community.
As most of our recovering clients remain trapped in the closed refugee camps we have been able to follow our clients easily. In 2007, the DARE Network was able to help 69% of clients become and remain substance free from 1 to 6 years. As compared to various western programs, DARE Network has higher success rates which we attribute to our community based and culturally competent model of treatment. The future statistics now will be harder to follow as refugees are being resettled to third countries. Results from 2008 will challenge us to find a new methodology to measure our success as we lose long term clients and equally important, our experienced workers. We expect a reduced impact as we work to adjust and rebuild our capacity.