Author: Fung, Shing-on
Title: The narrative of ex-drug users' recovery journey in Hong Kong
Degree: DSW
Year: 2013
Subject: Drug addicts -- Rehabilitation -- China -- Hong Kong
Drug addiction -- Treatment -- China -- Hong Kong
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: Department of Applied Social Sciences
Pages: x, 303 pages ; 30 cm
Language: English
Abstract: Drug abuse is a grave problem in Hong Kong and how to combat it is a challenging task. One perennial problem is that even though the drug users have received different modes of treatment, their relapse rate is still very high. Fortunately, there are still stories of success. The gospel residential drug treatment is found to be effective in helping the drug users to abstain from drugs by altering their worldviews, resulting in their holistic and ever-lasting transformation. The recovery journey involves a long complex and process that is yet to be explored and studied in greater details in Hong Kong. By using the long interview qualitative research method, this study attempts to look into the complexity and meaning-making journey of ten ex-drug users, who have successfully given up drugs use for three to fourteen years. The findings show that drug recovery journey is a complex, multidimensional and dynamic process characterized by many ups and downs of the ex-drug users. The recovery journey is not only a turning back to their pre-addiction lives, but also a change of worldviews with supports from other people in the form of relationships built on love, patience and trust. In return, the drug users are empowered and able to access hope, develop personal agency and create meanings and purposes of life pursuits. Drug recovery journey is a self-discovery process in which the drug users have to breakthrough a lot of barriers and these complex inner journeys will require many personal reflection. In addition, the ever-lasting supporting and the never give up attitudes of their families are the main incentive for them. Last but not least, social affiliation with a drug-free peer group in a community is the foundation for ex-drug users to change. The ultimate goal of recovery is the development of a healthy, productive and meaningful life rooted in a caring community. In this connection, the government should allocate more recovery capitals to help the ex-drug users to attain long-lasting changes by reconnecting with themselves, family and the society.

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