Community Assignment: Greater Sandhills Area Narcotics Anonymous Student: Lashanda M. Thompson, BSW
Class: SWRK 605-01, Social Work Practice with Groups
Instructor: Dr. Carla Fagan, Ph.D, ACSW
Institution: Fayetteville State University
Date: March 21, 2015
People grow in interaction with many systems, such as school systems, neighborhood systems, and extended family systems. These systems offer a needed source of social support. Social support systems are continuing social aggregates that provide individuals with opportunities for feedback about themselves and for validations for their expectations about others, which may offset deficiencies in these communications within the larger community context (Ashford, Lecroy, & Lortie, 2001). Self-help groups are different from the other groups. The group controls their own resources and policies. Self-help groups are self-governing and self-regulating. A self-help group serves three primary functions to it members. The three primary functions are to receive information on how to cope, obtain material help when necessary and lastly feel cared about and supported. Self- help groups are fundamentally based on the idea that people with like experiences can offer the best information regarding these three functions (Ashford, Lecroy, & Lortie, 2001). Self-help groups seem to becoming more popular. The individuals participating are able to express their feelings and receive emotional support from people who share their experiences. Being in a group with other people, who relate to your experiences not only allows people gain confidence. But, it gives them a sense of feeling that they can take action to solve their own problems. Self-help groups also help empower individuals to help themselves, and others. A person participating in a self-help group can help end the sense of feeling isolated and experience their alone. An effective group should help members achieve recovery through mutual support as well as provide them with updated information about causes and treatment (Ashford, Lecroy, & Lortie, 2001). I attended a Narcotics Anonymous (NA) self-help group meeting in our community. The reason for the visit was for clarification on what goes on in a self-help group meeting. I am child of a drug addicted parent. My father lost the battle of addiction to crack cocaine. This addiction has caused my brothers and I physically and emotionally stress for the past twenty plus years. It has been both heartbroken and exhausting. I decided to attend a meeting to get information on self-help groups, so we could encourage our father to start attending a self-help group. The meeting started at seven o’clock in the evening. It lasted about ninety minutes. It was a fellowship of individuals who, through shared experience, strength, and hope, are recovering from being addicted to drugs, alcohol or both. Their primary purpose was to abstain from using drugs or alcohol and to carry this message of recovery to those who suffer. There were no dues or fees for members of the group. The self-help group is self-supporting through members' contributions. They took up donations a couple of times during the meeting. The Twelve Steps is the heart of the Narcotic Anonymous recovery program. These steps offer members a new way of life enabling a healthy start to live without the need of drugs or alcohol. It is a guide toward a new way of life. The Twelve steps program is well known for use in treating alcoholism and drug abuse (Shelley & Santiago, 2013). It allows positive peer interactions, mutual support to those who maintain recovery from alcohol or drug abuse. In order to be successful in the twelve steps, you must be honest to yourself, has faith, surrender your old lifestyle, accept responsibility, be willing, be forgiving, seek help by prayer, maintenance spiritual guidance, and seek counseling or attend self-help groups (Shelley & Santiago, 2013). The...
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