Why do young people become addicted to drugs and alcohol? Recent Triple Care Farm graduate, Hugo, has bravely shared his story for our Christmas Appeal.
He explains that his harmful drug use started as self-medication to combat his pain.
“The truth is, I have a mental illness,” said Hugo.
“I became addicted to drugs because I sought relief – any relief – from the crippling anxiety and depression that overcame me daily. Drugs were just a destructive band aid for my chronic mental health struggles.”
This is an incredibly honest insight from a young person on a life-changing journey to recovery.
Our Impact and Outcomes Report showed that 82% of young people who came through the Triple Care Farm program had experienced a mental illness and just over half had attempted to take their own life in the 12 months prior to entering treatment.
We also know that fear and stigma associated with mental illness prevents many young people from seeking help.
Hugo credits his counsellor at Triple Care Farm for helping him get to the core of his issues, identify his triggers and develop strategies to stay well in the community.
Aftercare makes a difference
Graduates often describe feelings of fear and anxiety at the prospect of leaving the safety of the farm and returning to their lives. Hugo was no different.
But that’s when our Aftercare program really makes a difference!
Aftercare provides each young person with six months of support from a dedicated Youth Worker after leaving the program. They assist with a smooth transition back into the community and towards pathways to education and employment.
As part of this support, the young person’s mental health is monitored, with referrals and guidance provided in times of crisis or need.
Now living back in the community, Hugo knows this support is invaluable.
Recovery is not a straight line, but with the support of his Aftercare youth worker, friends and family Hugo is working hard to put his life back on track and accept new opportunities that come his way.
Hugo, thank you so much for your generosity in sharing your story.
Do you need help?
If this story brings up any uncomfortable feelings for you, please reach out for 24/7 crisis support via:
- Lifeline on 13 11 14
- Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800 or