Analysis of the Work of a Social Services/Welfare Agency
Analysis of the Work of a Social Services/Welfare Agency
Social Awareness Group:
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Introduction: Part I-Description of Agency and Service.
Social Awareness Group is a socio-cultural organization - Analysis of the Work of a Social Services/Welfare Agency introduction. It is a registered Non-Governmental Organization, with a democratic set up. Elections to the Managing Committee of the Social Awareness Group are held once in two years. Its funding is done by private donations and support from the philanthropists. The SAG (Social Awareness Group) is relentlessly working for social reformations. We believe that drug abuse and alcoholism are among major causes of social maladies and they direct the youth to antisocial activities and terrorism. The Organization has formulated its exclusive Psycho Analytical Treatment Module, with ancient and modern techniques. This system works on the total personality of the individual. Our focus is to initiate in the addict, retrieval to normal life by actuating internal self-healing. The healing begins both at physical and psychological levels. This treatment module prevents the relapse as well.
We remain in constant touch with the latest information/techniques in relation to drug demand reduction, from across the world and adopt the procedures as found fit use as per conditions prevailing in a given area.
“The Health Officers Council of British Columbia — in their 2005 policy discussion paper, A Public Health Approach to Drug Control in Canada — has adopted a public health model of psychoactive substance use that challenges the simplistic black-and-white construction of the binary (or complementary) antonyms “use” vs. “abuse”. This model explicitly recognizes a spectrum of use, ranging from beneficial use to chronic dependence”
We have fund this paper contains many useful and practical suggestions, implementation-worthy.
Drug abuse is not only a problem arising out of the availability and supply of intoxicating drinks and drugs but it has a great deal to do with the social conditions which create the demand for or the need for the consumption of such substances. Our approach is to change social conditions through awareness and appropriate treatment. We conduct workshops in rural belts, urban tenements, corporate houses, schools, etc. Initially we had makeshift arrangements for functioning, and after about two years work experience, we have established a full-fledged de- addiction center, for reformation and rehabilitation of addicts. The centre provides all-inclusive services.
The entire gamut of activities of the Group revolves around two words, Social Awareness. We wish to change the thought process of the individual, by implanting right social values in him. When your thought process is changed, your action process is also changed. As the wise saying goes, when the thoughts are changed, the mind is changed, when the mind is changed, the man is changed, when the man is changed, the society is changed!
The Social Awareness Group is firmly positioned on the platform of social awareness. It is established for the good of all. It neither believes in nor preaches any illogical ideology, dogma, creed, or cult. It works without distinction of caste, creed, color, faith, race, nationality etc. Our goal is to bring total reduction in drug demand among the addicts and transform the drug-afflicted society into a society that is totally liberated from drug and substance abuse and morally strong to stand against it under any and all circumstances. The youth has to take lead to guard his character and society.
Part II Analysis of the Program or Service:
Concept 1: Social Problem:
The concept of drug, drug abuse, drug dependence, drug addiction and abstinence syndrome need some clarity. ‘Drug’ is a chemical substance associated with distinct physical and psychological effects. It alters a person’s normal bodily processes or function. In the psychological and sociological contexts, drug is termed for habit forming substance which directly affects the brain or nervous system. The frequent use of drug is considered dangerous, even immoral and anti social.
Drug dependence denotes habitual or frequent use of a drug. Body functioning is interfered with, if the drug is withdrawn, and withdrawal symptoms appear in a pattern specific for the drug. The total reaction to deprivation is known as ‘abstinence syndrome.’
Drug abuse may be perceived both as an aberrant behavior and as a social problem. In the former sense, it is regarded as an evidence or individual’s social maladjustment. In the later sense, it is viewed as widespread conditions that have harmful consequences for society. In many countries, drug abuse is regarded as an important social problem. The use of illicit drugs is now not confined to street urchins and the lower classes; more and more middle and upper class youth are succumbing to drugs.
“The processes of industrialization, urbanization and migration have led to loosening of the traditional methods of social control rendering an individual vulnerable to the stresses and strains of modern life. The fast changing social milieu, among other factors, is mainly contributing to the proliferation of drug abuse, both of traditional and of new psychoactive substances.”(www.socialjustice.nic.in)
Concept 2: Source of the Social Problem:
An overpowering desire or need (compulsion) to continue taking the drug and to obtain it by any means! These include the largest number of drug-using students devoted to pleasure-seeking, new excitements and thrill. People take drugs as an escape mechanism or to alleviate distress and these tendencies tend to increase the dose (the quantity of intake.) Psychological causes, like relieving tension, easing depression, removing inhibitions, satisfying curiosity, removing boredom, getting kicks, feeling high and confident and intensifying perception are some of the causes. Social causes like facilitating social experiences, being accepted by friends and challenging social values do also contribute a lot. Physiological causes are staying awake, heightening sexual experiences, removing pain, and getting sleep. In drug abuse, it is impossible to single out any one cause for addiction. Mostly, it is the result of multiple causes.
“Using psychoactive drugs, be it to find pleasure or to avoid pain, can harm health and cause social problems both in the short and longer term. Health effects can include diseases of the liver or the lungs, cancer, deaths and injuries caused by accidents, overdoses, suicide, and assaults. Examples of social effects include arrests, the breaking up of relationships, as well as neglect of work and family duties.” ( Patrick, P..)
Drugs are generally obtained from non-medical sources such as friends, acquaintances, family members etc.
Solution and Intervention:
Drug abuse can be controlled by adopting the following measures:
Impart education on the harmful consequences of drugs.
Sensitize the family and relatives about the ill-effects of drugs and that they constitute a major influence upon the victims.
Undertake the follow-up study of the addicts under detoxification program and also to ensure that the enforcement institution of the government executes its duties and to check the erring officers working in collusion with the drug mafia.
Establishment of centers where proper treatment to addicts is provided and work out such measures that could prevent the relapsing of the recovered addicts.
Concept 3. Practice Approach:
It is our firm belief and experience, after working in the field of de-addiction that the de-addiction treatment can treat and recover an addict but it is difficult to prevent relapsing, in the long tem. The Social Awareness Group has developed treatment modules and we do provide facilities that treat, cure, detoxify, recover and rehabilitate an addict. It ultimately transforms him in such a manner that there is a total denial to and abstinence from drugs, alcohol and any type of substance abuse.
“People with drug abuse problems come from all walks of life and have different needs. Treatment services thus must offer a range of approaches and should be tailored to each patient.
The treatment and rehabilitation process should begin with the early detection of drug abuse. The process includes all stages leading to eventual reintegration into society.”(UNDOC)
With the impact of our project, there is increase in the level of awareness among masses and the stakeholders. This is a technique that can totally transform and reform an addict in to a decent individual and make him the useful member of the society. We actually visit specified localities, do survey and encourage the drug addicts to visit the centre to avail the treatment. Road shows are conducted, slides are shown, mini-exhibitions are held to highlight our achievements and also explain the future plans.
But, the top is always vacant. The seriousness of the problem is not visualized by governments and other international social organizations. Drug abuse is like an avalanche. You cannot control it with the fence of straw. You can’t reach the moon sitting on the kite. The drug-addicted and directionless youth is the greatest disaster for any country.
The changes that I would recommend to improve the service and receiving assistance:
As a grass root level social worker, I am appalled by the magnitude of the drug addiction problem. The efforts of the various govt. agencies lack commitment. Men of heart and sincere dedication are required to work in this area. Each worker has to be a doctor cum philosopher. My first concern is to raise such an army of workers. Group of workers are not sufficient to tackle this problem, therefore I say, army of workers.
The awareness campaign about the harmful effects of drugs should become part of the syllabus in text books in schools/colleges. It is no use hiding the information about drugs from the younger generation. They have access to it, anyhow, through the net. The senior students need to be given practical training through visits to rural areas, under the supervision/guidance of their teachers and the social workers of the Group. Rules need to be framed and necessary legislation enacted, so that it is obligatory for the big and multinational companies to donate a fixed percentage of the profits to institutions short listed to accept such donations. If there is breakdown in the social structure, it affects all concerned, the family, the social group, the law enforcing agencies, the judiciary, the government etc. It is our duty to mould the children as individuals of character. Progress has no meaning for doomed individuals. More and more changes in the drug demand reduction area may not bring the expected results, more and more commitment will!
Similar sentiments were expressed in the program initiated by Eurasia Foundation for Drug Demand Reduction Program for Uzbekistan in 2004. The problems for drug demand reduction all over the world are more or less the same.
“In building local, regional and national capacity by training relevant professionals and educating government officials on systemic deficits and needed policy changes, this program will develop civil society institutions and strengthen government-NGO ties in a country where these pillars of democratic society have atrophied.”(www.eurasia.org.)
(Most of the facts mentioned in the article form part of author’s personal experience.)
1. www.social.nic.in –Drug Demand Reduction and preventive policies: Government of India’s approach.
2. Patrick Jan Van Hove, Page…)
3. www.undoc.org—article, Access to treatment and rehabilitation.
4. www.eurasia.org.—The Eurasia Foundation, Article The Drug Demand Reduction …