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Blog post: Success rate and treatment

By Melissa Dobbertin, Alpha Home Admissions/Outpatient Program Director

Most people want to know just one thing about treatment – “Does treatment work?” Treatment centers are often asked this question another way – “What’s your success rate?”

We ask similar questions about other things, too. For example: “Is the medicine I’ve been prescribed going to work” or “If I sign up for gym membership will I become fit?”

We want guarantees, preferably rock solid 100% guarantees. But, we’re mostly reasonable people so we accept slightly lesser promises of success. 75-80% will normally satisfy us and convince us that the medicine is useful, the class will be good, and treatment works. So we proceed.

And then something happens and we become completely disillusioned and upset when things don’t turn out the way we hoped. Occasionally we lose faith completely and come to believe that the thing, whatever it is, is really not worth it and the statistics or success rate we were told are lies.

We get a flu shot and come down the flu. We sign up for yoga class to get rid of the stress headaches and we still get them. We eliminate caffeine and drink sleepy time tea before bedtime and still can’t get a good night’s rest. We send our son or daughter or even ourselves to treatment and then experience a relapse after we complete the program.

And we become non-believers.

So, how should we answer those questions: “Does treatment work?” “What’s the success rate?”

Well, the truth is that treatment works. Treatment has a 100% success rate and a 0% guarantee of success.

Treatment providers may not like or even agree with those statistics and I have to say here for full disclosure that these statistics are completely the opinion of this writer. There are no statistical studies or accumulated tracking reports or national databases to validate these statistics. Just my opinion.

Here’s why I say this.

100% of people who go to treatment and complete will successfully have been exposed to things that can help them stay clean and sober. It’s a 100% guarantee for any good treatment program because that’s what treatment does. Treatment teaches skills, provides knowledge, exposes ideas and sets a foundation to help a person succeed in recovery. However, going to treatment will never guarantee success. Treatment is not a cure any more than a flu shot or yoga or sleepy time tea.

Maybe the questions “does treatment work?” or “what is the success rate?” aren’t really the best questions to ask to understand or determine if treatment is worthwhile. Just because there is zero guarantee of success doesn’t mean treatment is not worth it or that treatment doesn’t work. After all, who can name one ‘best thing in life’ that comes with an iron clad guarantee of success?

Need a reason to shop?

 
Enjoy sips, sweets & jewels at this event. 20% of the proceeds will benefit Alpha Home.
Can’t make it to the store?
 Call 210.591.7180 during the hours and we will still receive 20%!
Kendra Scott Gives Back to Alpha Home
Thursday, May 18 from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Kendra Scott — Quarry Village Location

Beauty and the Big Give Video

Check out the premiere of Alpha Home’s “Beauty and the Big Give” video and donate to our The Big Give SA campaign starting TODAY to help us get a new passenger van for our clients.

“A van can be such a blessing; it will help us on the pathway to recovery… Big Give, Give Today, How Do I Do it? Big Give, Online, Please Help, We Need A Van!”

Donate at https://www.thebiggivesa.org/organizations/alpha-home#BigGive2017

Join Alpha Home at Siclovia!

 

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Find Alpha Home along the Siclovia route on Sunday, March 26th! We’ll be passing out goodies and have games on hand for anyone that stops by our booth.

Síclovía is a FREE event that turns major city streets in to a safe place for people to exercise and play. The streets become temporarily car-free for about 5 hours for families to run, ride bikes, take exercise classes, enjoy their city streets and get to know their community.

Check out the route!
http://ymcasatx.org/siclovia/route

Opening ceremonies will be held at Roosevelt Park approximately at 10:40 a.m.
http://ymcasatx.org/siclovia

The best luncheon ever!

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Thank you for joining us in celebrating Alpha Home at our 11th Annual Doorways of Hope luncheon. This year, we had the honor of having actor/producer, Danny Trejo, as our featured keynote speaker. He gave an inspirational talk about his own journey to recovery. This event was inspiring, fun and Danny was quite simply a gentleman.
The donations, sponsorships and raffle sales made this event Alpha Home’s most successful luncheon ever. We hit our goal of raising over $100,000! Thank you for your support of Alpha Home!
Special thanks to Valero Energy Foundation, Presenting Sponsor of Alpha Home’s 11th Annual Doorways of Hope Luncheon
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Alpha Home gets two new playground sets

Children who visit Alpha Home will have a new place to play thanks to a grant from The Charity Ball Association. Here are some pictures from the recent installation of the equipment. The playground sets will provide a cheerful space for supervised visits and for hands-on teaching of parenting skills. (Backyard Adventures San Antonio)

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Thanks to The Charity Ball Association for providing Alpha Home with the grant and Backyard Adventures San Antonio for installing the equipment.

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Alpha Home to partner with artist Branislav Jankic to screen “Letter To My Mother”

(SAN ANTONIO, Texas) – January 5, 2017 – Alpha Home – a local addiction treatment center – is pleased to partner with artist Branislav Jankic to screen Letter to My Mother, a short film about mothers struggling with addiction. The event will take place on Thursday, January 26, 2017, at 7 p.m. at the Santikos Palladium. Tickets for the film are $10 and can be purchased here: https://www.santikos.com/Booking/palladium-imax/3969409

Following the film’s screening, a Q&A will take place with Branislav Jankic and Monika Jac Jagaciak (Directors of the film), Dr. Richard P. Usatine (Professor of Family and Community Medicine at UT Health Science Center) (UTHSCSA), Melissa Dobbertin (Outpatient and Admissions Director at Alpha Home and one of the mothers featured in the film) and Rachel Rivera (Alpha Home Alumnae and one of the mothers featured in the film). The Letter to My Mother book will be available for sale and signing by the artist. Funds raised by this project will be donated to recovery homes that help mothers with addiction and their children in the United States.

Letter to My Mother is a visual and literary body of work created by artist Branislav Jankic that reveals an impactful look into the lives of mothers suffering from addiction in the United States. The project strives to lift the stigma of addiction and create an international support system for those suffering from this disease. The short film was shot during the first exhibition of the project in New York, June 2016. Alpha Home staff and Alumnae are featured in Letter to My Mother.

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The book came to fruition after Jankic learned of his mother’s painful diagnosis – terminal lung cancer – in November 2012. Jankic, who had experienced his own struggles with addiction throughout his teenage years, began a quest to reassess his relationship with his mother.

He began the process by starting a letter to his mother, reconciling with her and her life-long challenges, specifically the abuse of prescription drugs and alcohol. This act became the catalyst that set Jankic off on a journey to bring a narrative, not frequently told, to the forefront – to pro- duce a dialogue about motherhood and addiction outside of its stereotypically taboo associations. In August of 2013, Jankic and the project’s Producer, Goran Macura, set off on their quest, traveling the United States for 11 days, (1,200 miles by ground and 7,518 by air); visiting 6 states, including San Antonio, Texas, and photographing 40 women and their children.

In August of 2013, Jankic and the project’s Producer Goran Macura, set off on their quest, traveling the United States for 11 days, (1,200 miles by ground and 7,518 by air); visiting 6 states, including San Antonio, Texas, and photographing 40 women and their children.

The book chronicles the stories of mothers and their families as they openly tell their stories about addiction, abuse, shame, strength, and gratitude in a single letter accompanied by an intimate portrait. The large-format medium, which harkens back to classical portraiture and is ac- companied by a tedious and time consuming process, was chosen by Jankic to highlight the strength, endurance, and confidence of these women in recovery. Their restrained movement during the shoot allowed the subjects to speak only with their eyes creating beautiful, honest, and haunting portraits.

“My mother, all of these women, all of their children – they are beautiful. There is not one face of addiction. The women I chose are not defined by their disease, but by their motherhood. It can affect anyone, addiction doesn’t discriminate,” says Jankic “It was important for me to make that point – to show these women’s faces with the ultimate goal to make the conversation around addiction an open one, it doesn’t need to be and shouldn’t be hidden by shame.” – Branislav Jankic

In honor of these women, Jankic translated Letter to My Mother into an immersive multimedia installation that also bears the same name as the book for four days in June 2016 in New York City. The short film was shot during this period while the exhibition was installed. The display, like the book, included 12 portraits of women whose stories were especially powerful for Jankic as well as a series of written and recorded letters, a celebration of the subject’s bravery. The number 12 was chosen consciously in order to reference several contradicting yet relevant existing connotations of the number: the 12 Olympians, the 12 pillars of success, 12 step addiction programs, and 12 as a religiously charged historical recurrence.

Each of these manifestations carry positive weight: hope, faith, strength, community; but they also hold negative associations: loneliness, shame, violence, vulnerability. Jankic invites the viewer to contemplate both ends of this spectrum, as emotions and perspectives have changed throughout the addicts’ personal journeys and amongst societal perceptions. In order for a new dialogue around addiction to commence, dichotomies such as these, especially in relation to motherhood, must be acknowledged.

Tickets for the film are $10 and can be purchased here: https://www.santikos.com/Booking/palladium-imax/3969409

Letter to My Mother film trailer can be viewed here: http://lettertomymother.us/trailer/

Letter to My Mother books are available for purchase at this link and will also be sold at the event: https://www.rizzolibookstore.com/letter-my-mother

Letter to My Mother website for more information about the project : http://lettertomymother.us

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About Alpha Home:
Since its beginning in 1966, Alpha Home has served over 22,000 women in San Antonio and the surrounding counties. The mission of Alpha Home is to offer a pathway of hope, healing and recovery through spiritually based drug and alcohol services and support.

About Branislav Jankic:
Born in 1983 in Vukovar (former Yugoslavia), is a conceptual artist and photographer living and working in New York. After finishing his studies in Germany in 2008, Jankic travelled to Milan, where he met the distinguished photographer Gian Paolo Barbieri, who became his mentor. Upon moving to New York in 2009, Jankic had the opportunity to work with renowned fashion photographer Bruce Weber. Jankic is now a multi-media artist drawing on his own life experiences combining childhood memories, cultural traditions, tales, and rituals along with studies in philosophy and psychology. He looks to use his personal experiences and immediate environment to create artworks that speak to his audience in a wider context. His most recent exhibition, Flowers of My Life, was shown in Milan in March of 2016.

 

We met the challenge!

We are thrilled to report that thanks to you we have met a $10,000 matching challenge grant before our deadline! 44 donors came together in just over a week to double the $10,000 challenge grant to make over $20,000 in gifts to Alpha Home!

Thanks to everyone who donated, especially the anonymous donor who challenged us.

The money raised will go directly to fund Alpha Home programming that support responsible, stable and long-term sobriety.

Warmest regards,

Angela White
Alpha Home, Chief Executive Officer