Institute for Issues in Addiction and DependencyThe increase in the legal and illegal use of drugs as well as eating and behavioral disorders that take the form of dependency and addiction have become serious problems for our society. The ethical and scientific challenges and tasks that consequently result from these problems are the concerns that this institute works with in the framework of the academic program of Friedensau Adventist University.
This institute intends to:
- evaluate primary prevention strategies
- develop complementary and new strategies and evaluate them critically within the framework in which they can be put into practice,
- take part in basic research in cooperation with corresponding institutions,
- integrate research findings into the training of social workers and theologians,
- provide continuing education for physicians, theologians, social workers, nursing care personnel and other service agents,
- train professional addiction counsellors and telephone counsellors in dependency issues,
- accompany addiction counsellors and telephone counsellors in their services and conduct supervisions,
- maintain contact and exchange experience with in- and out-patient therapy programmes that have been initiated and are led by the Seventh-day Adventist Church, and as far as possible to interlink them within a network of services,
- cooperate with the International Commission for the Prevention of Alcoholism and Drug Dependency (ICPA of the United Nations).
Although dependency research has made numerous new discoveries, there are still many open questions. In addition, the number of dependencies and addicts has markedly increased. Besides the classic legal and illegal drugs, there are new ones introduced into the market that primarily affect the youth. Each year, more the 120,000 people die in Germany as a result of drug misuse. If we take into consideration persons directly in contact with addicts, that is, their partners and children, who also share in the suffering, there are at least 10 million Germans who are directly exposed to problems of addiction.
Unfortunately, there is a major information deficit concerning dependency issues, both among the population at large and among physicians, nursing personnel and theologians. Besides scientific research, instruction and continuing education, another important task of this institute is to support the professional services of the graduates of FAU.
On November 11, 2001, through the initiative of this institute, the first symposium took place on the topic of "The Significance of Spiritual Aspects in Dependency Therapy." The reports presented by well-known speakers have been published. Regular symposia are part of the institute’s programme. This institute does research solely for scientific and charitable causes.
Prof. Dr. med. Lothar Schmidt
+49 30 8023750