Tools and topics to delivering a recovery program
Having the right tools, resources and approach so that is it relevant and meaningful to Aboriginal people is essential to their recovery. To have a culturally appropriate rehabilitation program is not easy feat when clients are from different tribes and languages – Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal. How do you design and deliver sessions for people wanting to address their alcohol or drug use and negotiate cultural protocols and differences without stepping over the cultural boundaries? How does one integrate cultural thinking and activities into a program for Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people?
This session talks about the journey to developing various therapeutic yarning tools specifically designed for Aboriginal people from rural and remote areas with traditional and non-traditional backgrounds. Drawing from the strengths of Aboriginal culture and using what’s appropriate, Aboriginal staff and residents have worked together – providing ideas, feedback and assistance to develop meaningful tools using a self designed “Topics” approach. The aim was to produce tools and resources that embrace all tribes and cultures – without causing discomfort or offence, in a residential rehabilitation setting. Tools and resources also had to be simple for staff and residents to use, taking into account differences in language, culture, literacy, spirituality, gender and status. They bring together people from all walks of life regardless of cultural authority, status, upbringing, education or skills in a respectful and supportive way. It’s interactive and fun where people can explore, unravel and learn in a safe environment, where they feel empowered and free to provide input into their and other’s recovery. Designed for use in residential rehabilitation, the topic approach can also be used for individual or group sessions in any setting – beside a creek bed, in a men’s shed, women’s group, around a campfire, on country, a closed environment or service setting.