Work is Key to Completing the Rehabilitation Cycle

Labour reintegration is one of the driving forces that helps to overcome substance use disorders, prevent relapses, and help people achieve stability

International labour integration conference

Proyecto Hombre’s international conference on labour integration was held in Madrid on May 16-17

Work is undoubtedly a basic element to complete the rehabilitation cycle in addiction treatment programmes. However, in a country with high unemployment rates and where drug-related stigma continues to discriminate people having substance use disorders, labour integration poses a great challenge. Therefore, treatment organizations play a major role in this field by developing networks with like-minded organizations, the private sector and other entities that may prove helpful in facilitating this transition, with a special focus on job training and skills acquisition.

On May 16 and 17 in Madrid, the association Proyecto Hombre organized a 2-day conference dedicated to promoting social and labour reintegration. The conference brought together a hundred people from different countries with the objective of debating on current employment policies and promoting mutual learning in active reintegration.

Insola project beneficiaries

The association implemented a social and labour integration project for people with substance abuse-related problems. The INSOLA project has so far been able to support 4,600 people who received training for employment and/or have been able to access to the labour market. The project received a 7.8 million euros grant from the European Social Fund for the 2016-2020 period. The outcomes of the INSOLA project were presented during the conference, along with various testimonies of successful reintegration.

The conference provided an opportunity to review the drug situation in Europe and hear first-hand information about the objectives of the European Social Fund and how it is articulated in Spain. In addition, various organizations from Italy and Greece, working with at-risk populations including the Romani community and unemployed people over 45 years old provided an account of their work to promote social and labour integration in these countries. Studies were presented about the factors considered critical in addiction treatment, as well as their relationship with reintegration, and about the importance of evaluating the impact of reintegration efforts, as well as the training needs required to face the society’s digital transformation. Lastly, we had the opportunity to listen to testimonies from three people who shared their own reintegration stories’ successes, difficulties and challenges.

On behalf of Dianova, we’d like to congratulate Proyecto Hombre for their work in this area. We fully share this commitment and we believe it is essential to have such conferences organized so as to raise awareness about the problem, learn from other organizations’ experiences and involve more and more social actors in this field.