What is Serenity Centre?
Serenity Centre is located on the Kampala – Entebbe High Way, and is Uganda’s pioneer Centre for alcoholics and substance abuse. The Centre started with concern of the suffering priests but with time has opened to all people. Since 2001, serenity has given residential treatment to over 600 patients; from all walks of life in and outside Uganda.
By God’s grace a large percentage are back to normal life and helping in their society again – 62%. Our sensitization and outreach activities have also reached thousands both in and out of Uganda.
However despite all the interventions, substance abuse is on the increase; wreaking havoc to families and hurting the country.
In attempt to broaden our spectrum in averting and reversing the negative consequences of alcoholism and substance abuse, we encountered the challenge of the absence of an appropriate home. We therefore needed at least 7 acres of land to be able to construct our permanent home – The new Serenity.
We got the land lease for 7 acres from the Kampala Archdiocese at Kisubi Parish at a subsidised cost per acre and have now completed our new permanent Serenity home with the assistance of many donors and partners.
Who are the Founding Members and trustees of Serenity?
What are the future plans? (from the speech of Brendan Jordan MHM,on the occasion of the official opening of Serenity Centre on St. Joseph’s Day, 2012)
To accomplish Serenity Centre’s Motto : “A journey into new life”, it is our dream to respond more professionally and effectively to the needs of Uganda and surrounding countries to the damaging effects of the ever increasing problems created by the disease of Alcoholism and the increase of drugs substance abuse.
In 2004 Uganda had the gold medal for consumption of alcohol taking - according to WHO report - 19.5 liters of alcohol per capita per year and this despite the fact that 48% of the population did not drink. Needless to say some Government and Health officials did not accept the figures but did not disprove them either.
In the latest report of 2011/2012 we are down the list but due in large measure to the fact that 60% of our population is below the age of 20 and are too young to have started drinking, yet unfortunately it seems that the age of drinking, sexual activity and drug use is also younger for many and down to the age of 11/12 or even younger.
Serenity is a drop in the ocean in trying to respond to the social needs. But from a drop comes a ripple and the ripple in turn expands and creates waves.
We seek to respond by offering residential treatment of three to six months.
In the future as the dream takes root we would hope to expand in the following steps:
We will need to continue to work with and lobby the Government and Parliament through the Health and Education ministries, in particular, to get Alcoholism recognized as a disease that needs special treatment and support. Also we need to increase our cooperation and dialogue with police and the ministry of Internal Affairs to see that alcoholism is not just a crime - drunk and disorderly - but a disease that needs treatment and not just imprisonment; stricter laws are still needed for the prevention and to deal with the criminal fallout. It is a disease and addiction that leads to crime and therefore we need to work for prevention and be more proactive. But as a rehabilitation Centre we believe there is hope for a journey into new life.
For more information and photos on the Serenity Centre click HERE
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