The country’s famed residential drug treatment centre, Verdun House, is looking to expand its programme – with $5 million dollars to help, chairman of the Substance Abuse Foundation (SAF) Peter Boos has told a fundraiser.
He told an audience at the Frank Collymore Hall last Saturday that the foundation, like any other charity, needs sustainable long-term revenues to support the work being done.
“We are this year about to expand that programme considerably on four acres of land at Verdun House; we must raise $5 million to do so. And we will, because we must,” Boos told patrons at Renew – A Charity Fundraising Concert.
The function was held as part of Verdun House’s 20th-anniversary celebrations, honoured founding visionaries Desmond Nicholls, Harold Hoyte and Mousa Moses. Present were 21 clients who had successfully undergone the treatment programme over the years.
The SAF treatment centres – Verdun House for men and Marina House for women – offer a 90-day abstinence-based, 12 Step-oriented residential treatment programme.
The chairman said the millions the charity is seeking to raise will also help continue their renewable energy initiative.
Boos explained: “Two years ago, we embarked on an unprecedented enterprise to create a source of sustainable revenue, where at a cost of $550,000 we equipped all our buildings at Verdun House with solar panels to generate income to contribute to funding costs of out recovery programmes.
“We also trained 24 clients, women and men, to work in this field of solar panel installation and maintenance.”
He added: “Our future funding model for SAF is innovative and sustainable.
“It includes major contributions from philanthropists, Government, renewable energy investments, our own entrepreneurial social enterprises in partnership with local visionary business leaders and volunteers.
“We all have a stake in SAF’s future and opportunities to be supportive.
“We are grateful for your giving whether small or large.”