HORTICULTURAL THERAPY IN A RESIDENTIAL DRUG AND ALCOHOL REHABILITATION CENTRE IN AUSTRALIA
Horticulture is used in a number of ways for a wide range of client groups. This paper examines specific case studies of individuals affected by substance abuse living in a 90 bed residential rehabilitation centre in Melbourne, Australia. The rehabilitation centre is administered by Odyssey House Victoria, and is managed as a Therapeutic Community. Clients engaged in the program do so voluntarily and suffer from a range of social and psychological disorders. The program resides at a former catholic seminary which is set on 30 acres on the banks of the Yarra River, around 15 km north-east of Melbourne. Clients are looking to examine the reasons for taking drugs and more importantly what strategies they can employ to make their lives more meaningful. The program attempts to simulate a structured work program with integrated formal group therapy as well as a number of other therapeutic modalities. The horticulture program includes formal certified training, growing plants for sale, management of a large vegetable garden, various ornamental gardens, a sports ground and livestock. Clients learn to operate small and large machinery and are involved in the development of the property. The horticulture program uses all of these functions as opportunities for treatment as well as providing vocational education. This paper also examines the benefits provided by specific activities performed by clients.
de la Motte, P. (2009). HORTICULTURAL THERAPY IN A RESIDENTIAL DRUG AND ALCOHOL REHABILITATION CENTRE IN AUSTRALIA. Acta Hortic. 832, 77-80
rehabilitative horticulture, horticultural programming, Odyssey House