Coolmine Therapeutic Community (CTC) succeeds with reduced budgets but calls for help to combat waiting list for the only mother and child residential treatment centre in Ireland.
Coolmine TC launched it's 2010 Annual Review on the 21st of October.
The report shows that Coolmine Therapeutic Community supported over 1,160 people and provided intensive treatment and rehabilitation services to 320 individuals and their families with drug or alcohol addiction in 2010. Despite reductions in core funding the organisation has continued to provide high quality services and have made the necessary improvements to provide easier access to treatment, increase retention and improved outcomes. Three examples of many are outlined below.
· Coolmine is the only women & child residential treatment service in Ireland. It has a waiting list of 15 mothers, and 2 expectant mothers, wishing to access this service. One of the major barriers for women accessing services is that they do not want to be separated from their children. Currently CTC has resources for one child care worker which means that they are restricted in terms of dealing with the demand. Based on 2009* (reference source NDTRS) figures, 17,000 people were treated nationally for addiction, 9.5% of these were mothers with children. Coolmine urgently needs to increase resources to cope with this demand.
· Coolmine, with HSE support, employed a full time clinical nurse specialist (addictions) in 2010 to allow it to improve its detoxification programme. As a result of this 100% of clients successfully completed its community based residential detoxification programme and over 55% of these individual continue to be supported at the time of going to press. Currently there is a waiting list of at least 20 people trying to access our detox programme. This has clearly made our organisation more accessible.
· A major refurbishment programme of all of our premises was completed in 2010 with the reopening of our city centre facility at 19 Lord Edward Street. By improving access, making facilities as welcoming, safe and secure as possible we have increased retention and produced better outcomes.
Speaking at the launch of the annual report, Coolmine’s CEO, Mr Paul Conlon, argued the case for investment in treatment /rehabilitation and outlined how the organisation has coped with reduced funds to date.
· For every €1 spent on helping clients overcome their addiction, €3 is spent keeping a person in prison. 30% of all Coolmine’s referrals and admissions are through the courts with direct referral from the probation and prison services, with over 20% coming from Cork City and County. This has been a rising trend in recent years.
· The Community’s overall funding has been reduced by approx 7% year on year since 2008. We have adapted to the current economic climate and have not allowed our front line services to suffer. We believe that our clients come first and we have managed through a mixture of partnerships with others and cost cutting exercises to deliver all aspects of our services. Only 5% of all our income was spent on administration and the Community was committed to keeping this to a minimum and ensuring best value for money.
CTC strongly believes that working together as a community, internally and externally, we can enable our clients and their families to end their dependence on drugs and alcohol. In these difficult economic times we feel that it is vital that our services are maintained and that we continue to provide people with the opportunity to overcome problems and contribute positively to Irish Society.