The Josefa Menendez “Passion for Life” Foundation came into being ten years ago as a fruit of my long-standing service to young people addicted mainly to drugs. Having understood that addiction is a non-curable illness leading to death, I, together with my friends, decided to take preventive measures.
In 2008, we were able to put up a Prevention Centre in a building that was shared with us by the Legionowo Town Office. As part of our mission, we offer free legal assistance, psycho-educational and psychodrama groups led by our specialists, and psychological and therapeutic support. We also organize workshops on co-dependency and other creative ways of helping young people and their support groups.
Convinced that education is key to addressing the roots of this problem, we have developed an Addiction Prevention Programme that is now being implemented in schools. Throughout the year, we also have a variety of workshops, conferences, exhibitions, and concerts that are aimed at increasing awareness and preventing addictions and violence. For a few years now, in agreement with the Town Office, we have also been providing legal counselling and therapeutic activities.
Since 2009, we have been preparing the ground for the “Passion for Life” Centre which aims to harness young people’s passions through theatre, dancing, singing, music making, sports, civic education, and spiritual development. Through the kindness of local authorities and a resolution made by the Legionowo Town Office, we have received land, and have been able to begin the physical construction of the Centre.
The Centre’s first floor will be dedicated to providing therapy and support, while the second floor with be a shelter for twelve persons who would like to begin a new way of life. These are young persons who have completed therapy and now wish to be re-integrated into society — finding work, returning to studies, developing their personalities, enjoying a sober life. The Centre, which is not envisioned to be an institution, will be their temporary home. For more information, please visit our website (in Polish): http://wspieraj.pasjazycia.org
The work is currently in progress. Through the generous help of individual sponsors and of Caritas Poland, the Italian Bishops’ Conference, and Renovabis Foundation, the main frame has now been erected. But the house is half-finished, and we continue to look for funds to complete it.
The Foundation carries out the mission of the Society of the Sacred Heart in Poland. This would not be possible without the support of other RSCJ. Together we endeavor to make “Passion for Life” Foundation a concrete expression of “discovering and revealing the love of the Heart of Jesus,” especially among the young.
Jolanta Glapka rscj