While we might be able to recognize the benefits of teamwork in our daily lives, how often do we extend that to reach the members of our community?
After all, while we may accomplish little alone, together we can accomplish a whole lot more.
Just ask John Douglas, of the Port Alberni Shelter Society!
“When it comes to our current approach to the opioid crisis, it’s almost as if our efforts are like Band-Aids on bullet holes – we don’t have an effective, long-term solution to put an end to addiction,” Douglas notes. “In order to make this happen, we need to come together as a society.”
Although PASS has worked hard at providing food, shelter, clothing, advocacy and support to those who are underserved in the Alberni Valley, they’re working to take their efforts one step further.
Through their Opioid Dialogues, they aim to stimulate the dialogue around the subject of addictions and explore unique opportunities, specifically around the idea of Therapeutic Recovery Centres (TRCs).
With the hopes of directing clients to recovery pathways, PASS has explored successful Therapeutic Recovery Centres around the world, with a particular focus on successful models in Spain and Portugal. While our current accepted treatment model typically has a low rate of success – only 5 per cent – TRCs see success rates upwards of 70 per cent.
To that goal, PASS has brought their own TRC to Canada with their Shelter Farm, a vegetable farm and social enterprise aimed at teaching skills in irrigation, crop management, business management and more.
Douglas has pushed the dialogue one step further by reaching out to government officials to encourage their involvement, speaking with Josie Osborne, Minister of Municipal Affairs, Nicholas Simons, Minister of Social Development, and Sheila Malcolmson, Minister of Mental Health.
“By making these connections, PASS is hoping to fill the gaps that people fall through and to promote the dialogue for these gaps,” Douglas says.
You too can get involved by joining the conversation, volunteering your time and effort or by making a donation. No matter which way you choose to show your support, you can be confident that it will help make a difference!
To learn more, make sure to visit them online. You can also be participate in the Opioid Dialogue that is so critical for our soceity at this time.