Oum el Nour
Contact Person: Mouna Yazigi
Address: Zouk mikhael, St Elie Bldg
P.O. Box: 11-9666 Beirut
Telephone: 09 210285/ 223731
Mobile: o3 236663
Fax: 09 210285/ 223731
Purpose of establishment:
Oum el-Nour started in 1989 as a casual camping of a handful of people who rallied around their friend to make sure he does not succumb to an overdose. What they thought would only last a few weeks stands still today. The informal camping officially became in 1990 a non profit, Non Governmental Organization, offering therapy programs of 12 to 15 months in two different rehabilitation centers. Founded by virtue of government decree NO 120/AD, Oum el-Nour rapidly grew into a well-established organization concerned with the rehabilitation of drug-addicts and with drug prevention.
A team of 52 experts -including psychologists, psychotherapists, social workers, educators, physicians, lawyers, economists and ex-drug addicts- joined the group of friends in their fight against drugs, in addition to 300 volunteers who now form the organization’s general assembly, board of directors, public relations committee, the parents cell and the youth’ cell for prevention.
- A welcoming office where a professional staff listens to people concerned with addiction problems.
- Two rehabilitation centers, offering 12 to 15 months-rehabilitation programs with residency. One in Sehaile for men with a 60 beds capacity and one in Feytroun for women with a 30 beds capacity.
- A follow up bureau in charge of social reinsertion after the residential
- A back-up program for parents
These programs are open to all free of charge, without discrimination of any kind, whether racial, religious, or of nationality, age, political allegiance…
The prevention bureau is located in Zouk. The main goals are:
- Enhance social awareness, involvement and participation.
- Disseminate appropriate information on substance abuse.
- Design and implement prevention programs.
Prevention is an advance measure used to keep an undesirable state of things from happening. At the beginning, we must specify what we want to prevent and why, and then try to understand how the problem emerges in order to forestall it – thereby leading to the determination of change-related objectives and the appropriate means to attain them.
These means are as follows: information, persuasion, education and development. They are all part of three great strategies (communication, education, integration) and cover a variety of activities, ranging from a simple brochure to community development.
Oum el Nour combines these different strategies in order to elaborate its prevention program.
I – The communication strategy aims to increase knowledge, strengthen or modify attitudes, and eventually influence the action intentions of a target audience. It transmits messages in order to spread new types of behavior and modify old ones, and therefore associates information and persuasion.
Two programs based on this strategy have been elaborated since 2000:
- Adwa’ offers precise information and awareness about drug addiction through presentations, conferences, debates, testimonials…
- The Drug Observatory targets the general public in order to create a collective awareness at the service of addiction prevention, through written presentations (leaflets, brochures, articles, reports, books…) or media presentations (audiovisual documents, radio/TV programs, films, posters…).
II – The education strategy aims to increase and develop the personal skills and competences of a target population. It is about going beyond the simple awareness of drug-related dangers and focusing on the private motivations that may lead to the use of drugs: “Increase the capacities of people in order to help them better manage their lives” (Cormier).
- The Youth Connection mobilizes and trains groups of young people to enable them to set up a prevention program within their environment. It is a peer approach aiming to influence a group through the development of competences and ‘self-management’.
- The Prevention School organizes training sessions addressed to professionals in the health and social education field who wish to have an active role in drug addiction prevention in their professional environment.
III – The integration or participation strategy aims to reinforce the capacity of action of individuals and groups by creating connections, establishing a feeling of solidarity, and encouraging initiatives. It is a community approach that develops individual and collective responsibilities.
- The Chain of Solidarity is a program that aims, through a community approach, to implement projects and their appropriation by local society (public/private institutions, educational establishments…).
As a conclusion, the Oum El Nour prevention program integrates all the strategies to cover all the dimensions: information, education, and development.