6: One-day roundtable with rehab leaders and government officials

Deputy Chief of Mission, Caryn R. McClelland of the US Embassy visited the Celebrate Recovery training, here holding flowers and posing with SAMHSA staff, Helping Up Mission experts, HIF staff and CityPartners volunteers

On Wednesday, during the Celebrate Recovery training, the key leaders of the Christian drug rehabs joined a one-day roundtable discussion with government officials in HIF’s classroom. Organized by SAMHSA, the goal was to seek support from relevant government offices for the faith-based rehab centers in order to provide much needed services to the beneficiaries. SAMHSA director Nadine Rogers had recruited Tom Bond of the Helping Up Mission in Baltimore to present an integrated model of a Christian faith-based rehabilitation center. Dr. Denis Antoine of the John Hopkins University and Hospital shared about their partnership with Helping Up Mission as a role model for cross-sector partnerships.

Workshop participants represented the Vietnam Administration for AIDS Control, Hanoi Prevention Medicine Centre, Government Committee on Religious Affairs, VHATTC Hanoi Medical University, Center for Supporting Community Development Initiatives, FHI 360, MOLISA Department of Social Vices Prevention, and the University of Labour and Social Affairs. Besides the Christian drug rehab leaders and pastors, the Catholic priest of Hai Phong and a Buddhist monk also attended the workshop. This roundtable being the first of its kind, the various participants committed to mutual support and collaboration with practical action steps to be made soon. Many thanks to Nadine and her staff for championing these milestone events.