Charismatic group, private firm organize free drug rehab workshop for drug dependents
Couple Margaret and Jojo (not their real names) decided to surrender themselves to God and undergo drug rehabilitation after seeing their children growing up without anything that they could call their own.
Jojo, being the breadwinner, said most of his earnings from being a tricycle driver all went to buying shabu.
“Usahay maibog ko sa uban, ug unsay pangayoon sa ilang anak mahatag nila (I envy other parents who can give what their children wants),” he said in an interview on Tuesday.
Jojo added that even his elder sister had to adopt his eldest daughter so that she could finish school and could have a better future.
Jojo admitted that they did not even have a house to call their own since he was not able to save money to construct a decent house.
He said they were living in an extension room in the house of his parents in Liloan town.
The couple, who got married in 2010, attended the 10-day seminar workshop dubbed as “SuGod (Surrender to God) Drug Recovery Program” with the help of their aunt at the Love of God Community, a charismatic group headed by Fe Barino.
Jojo admitted that they were hesitant to attend it.
During the first two days, the couple admitted that they attended the sessions high from using shabu.
Margaret said their desire to be respected by their children was also one of the major factors that encouraged them as a couple to submit themselves to the program to help them stop using illegal drugs.
They were among the 65 participants who finished the program organized by the Love of God Community and Kaalam Foundation Inc. in partnership with IT WORKS! Chemical Dependency Center based in Ozamis City.
How it started
Barino, owner of Duros Construction, told reporters in a press conference that the initiative started when 46 of their employees tested positive for using drugs.
Barino said another factor that prompted them to do this was the call of Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma for lay organizations to come up with a rehabilitation program for drug addicts who surrendered to the government.
“We want to show them that there’s hope for them,” she told reporters.
Of the 65 participants who completed the workshop, 26 were employees of the company while the rest were drug users and four drug pushers who lived in Barangays San Vicente, San Roque, Sta. Cruz, Tabla and Yati in Liloan town.
Rene Francisco, program director of IT WORKS! Chemical Dependence Center, spearheaded the rehabilitation program.
The 10-day community-based program was designed as a live-out seminar workshop intended for out-patient drug addicts. This program was also a solution to the shortage of drug rehabilitation centers and the high cost of residential treatment facilities.
Scientific and spiritual
The program uses the scientific approach applied by professional drug rehab practitioners using the Evidence Based Therapy and The 12 steps Spiritual Recovery Methods of Narcotics Anonymous.
The spiritual aspect is handled by Fr. Monico Catubig, a priest who also handles drug-related family counseling.
The program is given for free to them.
Barino said they spent about P300,000 to cover for the food and other costs in inviting drug-rehab experts.
Barino admitted that they needed the help of groups and even the government to sustain their efforts since the program does not stop only after the workshop.
Francisco said the 10-day program was only a jump-start for the participants, and they would be made to commit to attend the Narcotics Anonymous meetings that would be held at least once a week to follow-up on them.
“The recovery is with the meetings,” he added.
Aside from this, it was announced yesterday during their closing program that those who wished to take up technical courses might avail of free skills training being offered by Duros.