Drug addiction: finding the road back to self-esteem

It's not always very easy to escape the vicious circle of drug addiction. The Le Gué Shelter counts on increasing self-esteem through work to find a road back to social integration.

Environment and Biodiversity

Poët-Laval, in the Drôme department of France, France

Jean-Pierre Tardieu

€40,000 to the Selection Committee at 2005/02/08 Project leader Le Gué

« My overall opinion is highly favourable. Management appears to be strictly organized, under the vigilant eye of the chairman. The decision to prioritize the upgrading to safety standards of the remaining facilities, particularly electricity and heating, is reasonable: the 2005 fire could have had extremely grave consequences. »

Jean-Pierre Tardieu

The Le Gué Shelter is a centre for the care and housing of drug addicts which was established 25 years ago on the premises of a former orphanage that belonged to the Benedictine Sisters of Perpetual Adoration and was located in the township of Poët-Laval, in the Drôme. The current director of the shelter is Father André Pernet, of the Religious Camillian Order. This facility offers fifteen resident young adults the opportunity to do market gardening, flower growing and small-scale husbandry.
The many types of produce from this activity are then sold in surrounding markets.
Little by little, the boarders at Le Gué rediscover their sense of exertion, adherence to schedules and work patterns and the enjoyment of working with others.
The objective of this shelter is, over time, to give them the skills they need so they can go back to a regular job.

Renovation for greater security of accommodation

The boarders at Le Gué rediscover a sense of exertion, adherence to schedules and the enjoyment of working with others, especially through the labour of food gardening.

Upgrading of the electrical and smoke alarm systems was done in 2002 to increase security on the property.
In a second stage, the indoor refurbishment of the buildings, at an estimated cost of €96,000, was designed to produce more comfortable accommodations, which would assist the integration of the people to whom accommodation is offered.
The shelter planned to refurbish the bathrooms as well as 11 boarders' bedrooms, redo the flooring and renew the heating facilities, which do not comply with current standards.But a fire that broke out in May 2005 turne everything upside down.
While the Drôme Departmental Directorate for Health and Social Services provided €400,000 for the operating budget of the Le Gué Shelter, and the Veolia foundation made a grant of €40,000, the devcastated furniture first had to be replaced: the kitchen facilities and the hot water plant. In 2006, operations continued with the refurbishment and upgrading of the corridor to electrical standards. It will still be some time before the Le Gué Shelter throws open its doors again.