Mithuru Mithuro Drug Rehabilitation Center in Ratnapura, Sri Lanka

Mithuru Mithuru Drug Rehabilitation
Ratnapura, Sri Lanka

Causes  |  Mithuru Mithuru Drug Rehabilitation Ratapura, Sri Lanka

Helping Men Recover

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Initiated in 1984, Mithuru Mithuro, which itself means “compassionate friend,” was started primarily to help the poor rural communities in Sri Lanka, and particularly the youth. But in 1987, when the judiciary directed four young drug offenders who were on parole to Rev. Bodi, the humble shack nestling on a hill against the Sinharaja Rainforest became a halfway house, providing in-house treatment for prisoners with drug offenses before they re-enter society. Thus, the Mithuru Mithuro Movement became the first Buddhist drug rehabilitation center in Sri Lanka. Today, there are 400 men undergoing treatment at four different locations, aged between 16 and 60 years old. 

Rev. Bodi recalls his childhood experience: “As a child, I lived near Welikada Prison in Colombo. I used to see prisoners being led, bound by chains around their hands and legs. I was deeply troubled by the treatment meted out to them and decided that one day I would do something that would help those marginalized by society to live with dignity, be they be prisoners or drug addicts. I want to create a virtuous society, a society where compassion, tolerance, gentleness, honesty, wisdom, and equanimity thrive to the fullest and where people disdain all that is harmful to others”. Even as a young monk at the Pathaka Buddhist Training Centre for Novice Monks, Rev. Bodi was already working with convicted prisoners. 

He has made it his mission that those who come Mithuru Mithuro abandon their addictions and lead happy and meaningful lives. To equip himself for the challenge, Rev. Bodi traveled to New York to receive training in the Daytop program, one of the oldest and most successful drug treatment programs in the United States. Based on the therapeutic community model, the program emphasizes the role of peer interaction in a “supportive emotional community in which people feel secure but at the same time are held strictly accountable for their behavior.”

There are a total of 380 resident patients, and is getting treatment in four different locations.

— In the head quarters in Mithuru Mithuro HQ, Pelmadulla total 130 – age 16-30 yrs
— City of Kuruvita, “ Nidahasa” Branch- 90 – age 20 to 35 yrs
— City of Gampaha, “ Nisansala,”Branch – 100- age 30 to 60 yrs
— City of Piliyandala, “Senehasa,” Branch – 80 ( mentally disabled drug addicts) – 25 to 40 yrs

Population Disposition:

— Males
— Ages 16 to 40 years old

Treatment Used:
Daytop International Therapeutic Community Module with Buddhist practices to develop a unique, faith based program that incorporates such activities as spiritual counseling, daily meditation and Buddhist chanting.

Medical Equipment Used:

— Portable Oxygen units
— Blood Sugar Meters

Challenges:

— Lack of research facilities
— Parents value awareness program
— Lack of clinical awareness program

Why this cause needs your support

Solutions that make a difference

— Due to the high demand for drug rehabilitation centers, a new building is already in progress for a fifth facility. 

— Current facilities are lacking furniture and equipment like Beds, Kitchen Utensils, and Bath items for 150 residents.

— This movement would like to build a gym facility.

— Audio visual unit to improve the statistics of our movement.

— An HIV prevention program is needed.

— Parents value awareness program.

— To start a children’s home day care center.

Who will run this initiative:

The founder Rev, Kuppiyawatte abuse counselor (USA).

Districts with High Prevalence rate of Drug Abuses

Name of the Districts

Colombo

Gampaña

Galle

Kalutara

Ratnapura

Kurunegala

Anuradhapura

Name of the Districts

77.2%

12.2%

1.8%

1.6%

1.5%

1.2%

1.2%

Name of the Districts

Hambanthota

Kandy

Puttlam

Kegalle

Matara

Polonnaruwa

Name of the Districts

1.1%

0.6%

0.4%

0.4%

0.2%

0.1%

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