Peddlers of Hope: A Harm Reduction to Street-Involved Youth who Struggle with Substance Use

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Chang, Kelly
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In this paper, the author conducted an extended literature review to examine the limitations and potential consequences of the mainstream interventions for street-youth who struggle with substance misuse. Harm reduction is discussed as an alternative model of intervention for street-youth. The author aims to provide a solid understanding of how a harm reduction approach strives to de-marginalize and humanize individuals through respect, empathy, open conversation, and client-centeredness. This paper hopes to liberate individuals who struggle from substance misuse as well as professionals in the human-services field from being bounded by mainstream intervention practices and their underlying values and beliefs. In the final chapter of this paper, a concrete working model that tailors toward street-youth is proposed. The proposed model of intervention integrates components from various harm reduction programs as well as pieces the author thought to be important or missing.
substance abuse , homeless youth