Many drug abusers and their family members have, to varying degrees, experience trauma. For instance, many drug abusers say their drug use is a means to cope with the pain of trauma. They are trapped in the vicious cycle of rehab-relapse as they continue to struggle with the long-lasting impact of trauma.
Meanwhile, affected family members often have their own emotional wounds to deal with, apart from handling the impact of drug-related problems at home. In many cases, there will be a communication breakdown between family members and drug abusers, leading to broken relationships and disturbances in family functioning that could have an adverse effect on rehabilitation in the long run.
Funded by Beat Drugs Fund Association, we launch the “Lightning Soul, Renewing Life – Psychological Healing Support Services for Ex-drug Abusers and Their Family Members” from 2018 to 2020. Through therapy group treatments, the project helps drug abusers and their family members to learn more about the relationship between trauma and drug use, so as to have a better understanding of the long-lasting effects of physical or emotional wounds brought about by trauma. Participants are also equipped with knowledge and skills to handle the aftereffects of trauma for long-term and stable rehabilitation.
Enhance the awareness of drug abusers and affected family members of the aftereffects of trauma and their connections with drug use, equip them with effective means to mitigate the impact of trauma, so as to facilitate long-term and stable rehabilitation.
helping drug abusers and affected family members to have preliminary understanding of the connection between trauma, coping behavior and drug use;
Three stages of group treatment include:
Understanding what is trauma, and how does it affect drug use and coping
Understanding the physical and mental impact of trauma, as well as learning alternative techniques (e.g. grounding) to regulate and mitigate the impact; and
Building mutual trust and utilizing group dynamics to help participants
to handle negative feelings such as helplessness, solitude and shame, so as to facilitate growth and transformation.
We provide drug abusers affected by trauma with trauma-informed counseling to mitigate its adverse impact. Through counseling, client will have deeper understanding of the relationship between trauma and drug use, and will also explore alternative mechanism of coping to facilitate rehabilitation.
We share our practice wisdom and knowledge of trauma-informed interventions with the social welfare sector and the public through publications and promotional videos. A conference will be held in June 2020, inviting stakeholders, academics and helping professionals to share their firsthand and frontline experience about drug addiction and trauma.