We have been losing “the war on drugs” because we are not addressing the root issue, which is emotional pain.
According to Dr. Gabor Mate, an expert on addiction, children who endure trauma often grow up to have insufficient supplies of certain essential “reward” chemicals in the brain, such as endorphins and dopamine. This is why many self-medicate.
If we want to support healthy transformation, we need to provide proper nutrition, shelter, counseling, and compassionate caring.
Instead of spending multiple billions on programs that don’t work, we need to invest in programs that get results.
I saw an amazing model in Barnstaple, England. A small ministry partnered with their city to provide food, housing, therapy, etc. for those in need. They have a day center where they provide an excellent meal, laundry facilities, showers, computers, a gym, and support. They also partnered with the city to provide “safe sleep” in their building during the winter.
They also bought houses around the city where they facilitate therapeutic communities. The houses are paid for by a housing stipend that those who are homeless receive from the government.
They are transforming lives and their city. It is a beautiful model and prototype.