This paper focuses on establishing the various cultural methods that can be used in overcoming alcohol and substance abuse. The contemporary world encourages the use centers such as rehabilitation stations where the addicts use therapeutic drugs in overcoming their addiction. The paper establishes the effects that culture has on various treatments. The customs, rituals, and various meanings related to cultural healing. The social approach to healing involves reviewing the issues surrounding spirituality of the region under study as well as the beliefs of the persons in the Alkali Lake, BC community. Better healing and underpinning of diseases are associated with cultural aspects and learning. The culture of individuals provides crucial contributions to the modern medicine and wellness programs. Culture plays a significant role in vital issues such as treatment of various ailments. Alcohol and substance abuse have become global crises which need to be addressed. The establishment of the rehabilitation centers for the addicts has become inefficient in the today world. There is an overall increase in the number of drug abusers, especially in the developed nations. Increases in users have continued to have an increase in the deterioration of economic and social welfare in these countries. The number of indigenous persons in North American region has continued to grow over the last couple of years which is a major contributor to the number of drug abusers. In the Alkali Lake, BC area, most of the community members are of Indian descents who have continued to uphold some of their cultural approaches to health issues and other concerns such as drug and substance abuse.
Keywords: Alkali, culture, diseases, indigenous, Canada, population, Native, community
The paper focuses on addressing the means by which the indigenous populations in Canada can use their cultural approaches in overcoming the problem of addiction.
Background of the StudyThe hope of healing from addictions among the indigenous communities is embedded in their culture. In contrast to the Westernized medical approaches, the cultural interventions approach the wellness issue in a holistic manner. The first logic used in cultural treatment is the benefit that educational methods recognize wellness as the harmonious relation within an individual that include emotion, mind, spirit, and body. The cultural approach to issues such as addiction emphasizes the need for balancing the traditions, language, culture, and the community prospects at large (Rowal et al. 2014).
Initially, the aboriginal communities avoided consumption of alcohol since they were aware of the social problems associated with liquor. Some of the indigenous persons, however, were involved in binge drinking but would later follow a strict observance of alcohol abstinence. The problem of prostitution among the native women was associated with the drinking menace that occurred from time to time in the region. In the Alkali Lake area, there was an increase in the rate of alcohol addiction in the period between 1940 and 1960. Also, there were increased problems of sexual abuses, community desperation, increased poverty, and economic dependency (Bopp & Bopp 2011). However, these problems were overcome in one generation after the population of the Indian community in the region had declined below a thousand in this region. However, years after overcoming the problem, the issue of alcoholism has emerged as a challenge once again. As the community is still going through the healing process, there are some addiction issues that the community's young generation continues to face.
Statement of the Problem
As the number of alcohol and substance abuse continues to pose an imminent danger in many communities, there is the need to use any possible approaches to address the issue. Also, people have continued to disregard the use of traditional approaches in the fight against addiction. A census conducted in 2006 indicated that there are over one million Aboriginal individuals who had settled in the country. The cultural initiatives offer the indigenous persons a promise and hope for curing addictions (Channsonneve 2007). Despite the knowledge of how the social interventions can work, the original settlers have not fully utilized them. Through this paper, there will be the establishment of the various methods that these indigenous populations can apply in their fight against addiction which is entrenched within their culture.
General ObjectiveTo establish the ways by which the indigenous communities can use culture in the fight against addiction.
Specific ObjectivesTo determine whether the available cultural approaches are useful in overcoming addiction
To establish the validity of cultural approaches to overcoming addiction among the indigenous population
To assess the implications of implementing cultural approaches in the fight against drug addiction
Research QuestionsDo the cultural interventions indicate efficiency in overcoming the addiction menace?
Do the open cultural initiatives show validity in the fight against addiction among the aboriginal population?
What are the effects of applying the cultural interventions in overcoming addiction?
Scope of the StudyThe study focuses on addressing the issue of how the indigenous communities may utilize culture in the fight against addiction. The community identified for this study is the Alkali, Lake, BC. The area is densely populated with Indians who settled in the area centuries ago. The study is limited to cover only the approaches viable in this community.
Justification and Purpose of the StudyThe information gathered from this study will be helpful to the members of the community in the Alkali Lake, BC region. The community may learn how to adopt the proposed means to combat the re-emerging issue of addiction among the young generation. Also, other indigenous communities in Canada and other parts of the American continent may find the results gathered from the study necessary. The rehabilitation centers are another beneficiary of the survey since they may adopt some of the cultural approaches found within the paper in their daily routines especially when dealing with persons of indigenous backgrounds.
DefinitionsAboriginal- Refers to natives of a place
Native population- initial/ original settlers of a place
Addiction- continuous of a substance that alters one's ordinary life
Culture- the beliefs established by a certain community
Literature ReviewThe Alcoholism Problem in Alkali Lake RegionIn the 1960s, the Alkali Lake area was faced with an overwhelming problem of alcoholism. Nearly everyone above the age of twelve years was an alcoholic. As a result, there was economic derailment in this region. The number of accidental incidences also increased as a consequence of the high alcoholism rate. The area became a danger zone, and many people from other areas avoided conducting their business in Alkali Lake (Bopp & Bopp 2011). The incidences of murder and alcohol-related ailments increased in the area as a result of the worsening conditions. Funerals became casual occasions in the area. In this era, children became victims of neglect, abandonment, abuse, and hunger. The people could engage merely in productive economic activities hence lagged behind economic-wise.
Alcohol was used by the western communities in Europe during special occasions. Alcohol was introduced in Canada by the European settlers who had come in search of colonies. As the years progressed, the aboriginal communities engaged in trading activities with the Europeans. It was during such initiatives that the Alkali Lake inhabitants adopted the art of brewing alcohol from common ingredients. Initially, the colonial government had signed treaties with the local residents that they would supply the required health services and other social amenities such as sugar, flour, and fishnets. The Shuswap people in the Alkali Lake region were also affected by these treaties. It is evident that the Shuswap people had a strong cultural background but was eliminated by the alcoholism scene that occurred in the 1960s (Bopp & Bopp 2011). The long-term effects of the phase of addiction in the region weakened the cultural background of the Alkali Lake people. Also, the ability of the citizens to learn and adapt the changes that occurred was constantly submerged. The capability of the Shuswap community to heal from the predicaments depended on hope, communal solidarity, individual empowerment, and spiritual anchoring. All the latter aspects lacked in the Alkali Lake community.
Community Approaches to HealingCommunity interventions use the survivors as the focal points. Persons who have witnesses experienced the impacts of a tragedy are more inclined to teach others about the effects of the calamity. According to a report by the Law Courts Education Society BC (2005), the community-based interventions are used commonly as supplements of the conventional approaches. Many of these community initiatives are developed and implemented without the influence from the authorities. Others have been passed on from one generation to another and focus on the welfare of the community members. Those that are widely acceptable receive funding from the governments, churches, or wealthy individuals who believe in their efficiency (Law Courts Education Society BC 2005). The community initiatives have four features that include being conducted in surviving communities, survivors play a pivotal role in implementing the strategies, are committed to healing the community, and are meant to meet certain community needs.
In the early 1970s, the Indian community that had settled in the Alkali Lake region experienced a high rate of alcoholism. Two members of this community decided to quit drinking and inspire others to follow suit. The community did not use any government funding in its development. The community members drew their approach that was aimed at addressing the issue of alcoholism in the area. With time, the community even established a commission of inquiry that was taske...
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