Harm reduction is a philosophy that was first developed by people organizing against the HIV/AIDS crisis and other health issues among injection drug users.?The Harm Reduction Coalition?states: “Harm reduction is a set of practical strategies that reduce negative consequences of drug use, incorporating a spectrum of strategies from safer use, to managed use, to abstinence. Harm reduction strategies meet drug users where they are at, addressing conditions of use along with the use itself.”
Redefined in terms of domestic violence and trafficking, harm reduction is a set of practical strategies that reduce negative consequences of certain survival and coping mechanisms that survivors use. It believes in creating a larger pool of options survivors can choose from, rather than narrowing them down through paternalistic guidance. It shifts the power back to the survivor as they navigate through their trauma, identify triggers that led to the dependency on the substance, and replace those responses with healthy coping mechanisms.
It decriminalizes the behavior and removes the stigma placed on survivors who are seen as “drug users,” and refocuses on their humanity, seeing the substance misuse as a form of escape from their situation of abuse. When this approach is utilized, the survivor is able to be more forthcoming as they are no longer ashamed of their addiction but understand it as a coping mechanism used to ensure their survival.
Depending on the goals of the survivor, Radiant Futures is able to support survivors in reaching their sobriety through sober living programs, counseling, and peer support groups.
Radiant Futures partners with Action Alliance which operates 22 homes through Orange County, housing approximately 300 individuals who are struggling with substance misuse. Their comprehensive program includes a three-month stay with support groups and activities. Survivors who are at the stage in their healing to become sober and identify a sober living facility as their method to accomplishing their goal, are able to enroll at Action Alliance. All costs are covered by Radiant Futures.
For survivors interested in using our counseling services to achieve their sobriety, they can participate in individual counseling, as well as enroll in our group counseling sessions. Radiant Futures offers Coping Club and Overcoming Addiction group counseling. Coping Club teaches positive coping skills which empower survivors to identify, examine, and work towards solving or relieving the issue. Overcoming Addiction gives survivors the tools and behavioral skills designed to help reduce the harm caused by alcohol and substance misuse.
Regardless of where a survivor is in their journey of addiction, Radiant Futures is committed to diminishing barriers that prevent survivors from getting help they need, and meeting survivors where they are. Our work in supporting survivors from a harm reduction approach ensures they are successful in not only reaching their goals, but sustaining their healthy habits.
If you or someone you know is in need of assistance, please call our 24/7 Helpline at 877-531-5522.