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Spiritual Celebrities

Russell Brand to Open Non-Profit, Free Rehab Center in California

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Actor and comedian Russell Brand is giving back to his community and reaching out to those suffering from addiction – something he himself struggled with and overcome.

Brand is launching a non-profit project called Freehab, a no-cost, 12-step drug rehabilitation program co-founded with Lauri Burns, who founded The Teen Project, according to a report by laist.com

Brand explained an important part of his own recovery is “awareness of other people suffering from this disease, the symptoms of which are obvious on our streets.”

Last week, the Los Angeles City Council voted 12-0 in approval of the Community Development Block Grant funds of $500,000 go to the non-profit where Brand and Burns plan to renovate and expand an 88-bed facility in Sun Valley, Calif., formerly run by People in Progress, a nonprofit that went bankrupt last year, according to City News Service. Freehab also has satellite locations in Skid Row and Hollywood, operating on mostly private donations and corporate and foundation funding.

In a CBS Los Angeles report, Brand said while there are “ugly aspects to addiction,” there is also the potential for people who have been a “terrible detriment to society” to change.

“When I spent some time in downtown Los Angeles, I was astonished by the degree and severity of homelessness in our community,” Brand said in the CBS report. “Now I know, for myself, for me, it’s astonishing that we’ve learned to acclimate to this extreme condition of people who are the same as us being cast aside.”

The treatment facility will serve approximately 200 substance abuse patients and plans to open in October 2013, the report stated.

4 thoughts on “Russell Brand to Open Non-Profit, Free Rehab Center in California

  1. There is a good Hollywood group of high spenders doing some good work in the States and Internationally. But the US has to clue in that their economic system needs a safety net for the millions of parents and children who don’t have health care, decent education, community resources … needed to lift people out of poverty cycle, needed to create real opportunities for talented and ordinary people alike. Read Developmental Health ad the Wealth of Nations, Hertzman and Keating Eds.for a start. . The steep per capital income gradient in US is directly related to prevalence rates of all kinds of physical and mental health conditions and crime rates-at the low end of the income gradient. Find ways to make structural change and you wont have a never-ending uphill battle with problems like addiction and so on. You’ll have a civil society and a national role model for democracy, unlike now.( MdM Canada Social Work Clinician)

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