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National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
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Suicide and Crisis Intervention Hotline (215) 686-4420
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Glossary

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Glossary

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Eligibility Requirements

Criteria established to determine if a person is appropriate for funding.

Empowerment

Is the experience of acquiring power and control over one’s own life decisions and destiny. Within the addiction recovery context, there are two different relationships to power. Among the culturally empowered (those to whom value is ascribed as a birthright), addiction-related erosion of competence is often countered by a preoccupation with power and control. It is not surprising then that the transformative breakthrough of recovery is marked by a deep experience of surrender and an acceptance of powerlessness.

In contrast, the culturally disempowered (those from whom value has been systematically withheld) are often attracted to psychoactive drugs in their desire for power, only to discover over time that their power has been further diminished. Under these conditions, the initiation of recovery is often marked by the assumption of power and control rather than an abdication or surrender of power.

Within the mental health context, empowerment typically refers to a person first taking back control of his or her own health care decisions prior to regaining control of his or her major life decisions and destiny. As such, “empowerment” has been used most by advocacy groups in their lobbying efforts to make mental healthcare more responsive and person-centered.

In either community, empowerment is meant to be inspiring, horizon-raising, energizing, and galvanizing. The concept of empowerment applies to communities as well as individuals. It posits that the only solution to the problems of addiction and/or mental health in disempowered communities lies within those very communities. It is important to note that, by definition, one person cannot “empower” another, as to do so undermines the very premise of the term, which attributes power over the person's decisions, recovery journey, and life to the person him or herself.

 

Engagement

The critical first step in the provision of services and beginning of the working relationship and building rapport/foundation of trust between the service provider and recipient as a basis for working together.

Everyday Lives

Having a life which is typical of the general population and includes: being part of the community; living among family and friends but having the option of living alone; feeling safe and secure; having choice in life decisions; having control over one's life; having dignity and status; and being recognized for abilities and gifts.

Evidence-Based Practices

Are clinical, rehabilitative, and supportive practices that have scientific support for their efficacy (under ideal conditions) and effectiveness (in real world settings). Advocacy of evidence-based practice is a commitment to use those approaches that have the best scientific support, and, in areas where research is lacking, a commitment to measure and use outcomes to elevate those practices that have the greatest impact on the quality of life of individuals, families and communities.

 
 
 
 
 
 
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