Odyssey House Victoria

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“ADMITTING I HAD A PROBLEM WAS NOT THE HARDEST PART, ASKING FOR HELP WAS.”

 

Annual Appeal 2016

After an appointment with her Doctor, Molly* spent a week in a withdrawal facility, before walking through the doors of the new Odyssey House Day Program in Werribee for the first time. Molly acknowledges that she was terrified. She had never attended any form of counselling or rehabilitation before, and she didn’t know anyone that she was about to begin her deeply personal and challenging journey with. However, Molly found the courage to overcome her anxiety, motivated by her strong desire to turn her life around.

Together with nine other participants, Molly embarked on the five week program of intensive daily activities, which supports individuals and their families to address their problems with alcohol and other drug use. Although the program has a particular focus on ice (crystal methamphetamine), it accepts people with all types of drug problems. The program was a good fit for Molly. While her drug problems had become severe, Molly had a safe and stable place to live, and she was motivated enough to travel to the program each day.

Like other rehabilitation programs, Therapeutic Day Programs work by strengthening relationships, teaching new life skills, and assisting participants to address a range of underlying issues such as childhood abuse, family violence, mental health issues, and poor self-esteem. The highly structured program of activities, education, and group therapy gave Molly some critical new skills including mindfulness, which helped her to better manage her emotions without using drugs. It also introduced Molly to some positive community connections, and provided her with relapse prevention and harm reduction strategies.

 

“That’s all very well, but with that comes the guilt that you are letting someone down. In the program, people really understand you.”

 

After her initial shyness, Molly says she felt she could say anything at all and not feel judged. She says, “I think they need more programs like this where you don’t feel labelled. One of the good things was that we worked hard each day, but you were still able to go home and live in the real world at night and on the weekend” Even though Molly has support at home, she says “That’s all very well, but with that comes the guilt that you are letting someone down. In the program, people really understand you.”

Molly has gone through lots of ups and downs in her life since completing the Program, but she has ongoing support from Program staff that has helped her maintain all of the positive changes.

 

“Before the Program I thought I was doing fine, but now I start to think about it, I learned so much that still hits home. They have definitely given me strategies that help me, but it’s up to me now what I do with it.”

 

Your support of Odyssey House in the past has assisted us in helping people, like Molly, with the little extras and we would like to ask you to help again by making a donation today.

 

DONATE NOW

 

 

 

 

Short Story Competition Winners 2015

Thank you to everyone who entered into the 5th Annual Odyssey Short Story Competition. The theme was The Choices We Make. Congratulations to our winners and a big thank you to our judging panel comprising Odyssey House Victoria CEO (and author), Dr Stefan Gruenert; Author Andrew Whitmore and Author Eliza-Jane Henry-Jones.

1st prize: Flowers

2nd prize: Making bacon

3rd prize: Stay til sunset

Highly Commended:  Telephone land

 

 

 

Our Commitment to Aboriginal Health

Odyssey House Victoria has made a solid commitment to bridging the health gap between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australians, guided by our Reconciliation Action Plan or RAP. Our RAP has identified many initiatives to enhance Odyssey’s cultural sensitivity and helps us to provide better services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander clients.
Odyssey is part of the Aboriginal Metro Ice Pilot program, which partners Indigenous services with specialist drug and alcohol (AOD) treatment services. This is part of Kulin Balit: the Victorian Government’s strategic directions for Aboriginal health. The pilot is a response to the need expressed by local Aboriginal communities for more culturally appropriate treatment of Methamphetamine (Ice) issues. It involves an experienced AOD counsellor working closely with an Aboriginal Care & Recovery worker in four Melbourne regions, overseen by a Victorian Aboriginal Health Service (VAHS) Coordinator.
Anne Tidyman, a senior Odyssey clinician, helped to establish the Ice pilot for Odyssey. She has worked with vulnerable families for many years as part of Kids in Focus (KIF).
“We have already noticed that the clients are benefiting from better advocacy, more streamlined referralsand better service access,” Anne says. Anne has been working out of our Footscray and Werribee hubs, VAHS and The Gathering Place to build stronger links between Odyssey and local Aboriginal services and communities. The Ice counselling role is assisted by Ron Briggs, Odyssey’s Senior Aboriginal Cultural Consultant. Anne has now handed over the reins to another Odyssey clinician and has returned to the KIF team as Manager.
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Following the Victorian Government reforms to Alcohol and Other Drug treatment last year, Odyssey House has set up a number of new offices. Through our partnership with UnitingCare ReGen and other support services including the Stepping Up Consortium, we are now located in more than 20 different sites across Melbourne and Regional Victoria.

To promote our new offices and let people know more about who we are and what we do, we have embarked on a promotional campaign, beginning with Bridge Road, Richmond.

Read more...
 

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Our Commitment

 

Artwork inspired by Chris Thorne.  There are five pillars that are upheld by the residents and staff at Odyssey House Victoria.

This artwork represents counting these pillars on one hand. They are Respect, Concern, Honesty, Trust and Love.

 

We acknowledge the traditional land owners of Australia and we welcome all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to our service.

Download our Reconciliation Action Plan

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