The MUCH MORE project, realized by partners from Finland, Latvia and Sweden addresses the problem of poor health and social inclusion of middle-aged men with past addiction problem. While in general the health of men is worse than women, the middle-aged men after heavy alcohol use experience several vulnerabilities with their social and working life ties broken. The public services are insufficient in providing a complex life guidance for this difficult to reach target group. There is lack of low-threshold, attractive and empowering activities for men, which would focus on manual work or trips to nature and at the same time providing health and life advice. This influences not only the individuals in question but also their families, friends and wider society.
To improve matters, the MUCH MORE project proposes developing and piloting an intervention model, which combines do-it-yourself and nature-based activities with social and working life counselling in peer-groups. The model will be developed with active participation of men by the partner organizations with an experience in reaching out to the target group. At the same time, training concept will be prepared to spread the project experience among health and social professionals. In a result, men should be better prepared to reunite with society and families.
The overall objective of the project is to contribute to the better social inclusion and health of the middle-aged men with the past addiction problem. It will be done by developing the activities for the social inclusion and health promotion for middle-aged men with the past addiction problem, who want to stay away from alcohol, including the piloting workshops, meetings and interventions.
The cross-border cooperation allows partners to learn from each other, share experiences and support each other with their specific expertise. The project results will be widely distributed in CB region and beyond via existing and emerging networks.
Expected Results (EN):
R4.1. Communities with improvements
Expected Outputs (EN):
The project results will be:
- middle-aged men with the past addiction problem engaged into the social and working life counselling and health promoting activities (at least 40 men in 3 cities engaged),
- developed and tested an intervention model engaging men into the activities and empowering them to reunite with the society,
- the professionals motivated to work with the difficult to reach target group through the training programme and new activities provided (at least 10 professionals in 3 cities),
- new activities organized and piloted in the 3 cities. They include nature- and do it yourself-based activities in the peer groups, with the site social and working life counselling and health promotion information. The activities will continue for a year.
- cooperation between organizations, NGOs and services established and/or strengthened.
The project tackles a challenge of a low social and working life activation of middle-aged men with the past addiction problem, who are also resistant to the health promoting information. The unhealthy lifestyle and multiple vulnerabilities bring the target group at risk of social exclusion. This, with the activities focused on reactivation and reunification of the men with social and working life, the project directly contributes to the programme result indicator.
The community of middle-aged men with the past addiction problem often solely includes men with low education and low income. It is definitely a group that needs improvements. The lives of middle-aged men with past addiction problem are not separated from the lives of their families and society, who worries about their health and lifestyle. Thus, the project does not only bring the change to the individual men but also to the wider group of their families, friends and colleagues. The project will develop and pilot the activities, which can be used by the city administration’s social services as well as NGOs to reach out to a bigger amount of men.