European Delegates Meeting

Juvenile Prison Latvia

All started with a presentation in Latvian Prison Administration. Then they accepted us and gave us social worker, who specialized in work with youth. In Juvenile prison there are 40 inmates with age started from 13 to 18 with drug addiction. We are visiting youth once in a month and in average there is 15-20 people in group. We try to change people who are going to this prison in order to have them as much experience as we can give from different people. Our main theme is “what NA is giving me”; “life story” and “life in sobriety”. We have the same meeting rules as adults, same principles and traditions except we don’t accept 7th tradition. Youth are not willing to share their experience in strict atmosphere, that rules are carried. So, I as a group secretary decided to loosen some rules. They can talk about drugs and using — if they want they glorify that, but it didn’t happen, but miracle, and they started to share. For a long time members (inmates) started to share and trust. For us it was heart heating event and happy moment, because they started to trust us. At the meeting we are friendly, but we don’t accept any kind of manipulation, aggressiveness and other forms of negativity, and we inform them about that. 

As NA members we are establishing sponsee and sponsor relationship. At the moment we have two sponsees and two sponsors. Youth are quite smart about stepwork. They pretty much understand everything. If they have questions they can call us once a week and read the steps after meeting. After the sentence, they come home, and we try to keep up connection between the and now adult groups NA. We bring them to first meeting, we buy some food, we drink tea together, socialize and try to care about them till they got on feet. For most of them it’s hard to accept caring and love, because they never felt it, and they are suspicious thinking that we need something from them.

For trips HI give us money.

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