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BREAKING RECORDS, ADDICTED MOTHERS
Addressing the needs of addicted mothers and their young children is a major challenge worldwide, marred by high failure rates and breakage of the mother - child dy ad. The multidimensional impacts of addiction, compounded by psychiatric co - morbidities, neglect, abuse and poverty , make the task of “breaking the cycle” an uphill battle and very often against all odds. In 1994, a coalition of Toronto - based organizations dealing with the social and medical aspects of child care, inaugurated BTC with the hope of creating an effective and sustainable model to support these mothers and their children. With no map to guide such a journey, it was clear that the team will have to create its own map, as well as the textbook that will inform the path. The inaugural team visited different institutions in North America, identifying what seemed as best practices, although often these practices were not anchored in strong evidence of effectiveness. The approach selected was eclectic in its nature, covering addiction counseling, child care and parenting skills, medical aspects, child protection, to ment ion a few. Critically, it was agreed among the founding partners that a climate and framework of continuous learning and research should be developed to guide BTC practices, so that the effectiveness of the processes involving in improving the abilities of the mothers to care for themselves and th eir young children can be documented though qualitative and quantitative research.
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