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The partnership

02 Ago The partnership

The SEEN Project involves 4 European organizations active in the field of harm reduction / outreach
activities drug use in 3 EU countries.
Associazione Gruppo Abele onlus – Lead Partner – It
APDES (Piaget Agency for Development) – PT
Villa Maraini Foundation – It

The partners were chosen because all of them, although with different characteristics, have for
decades played a key strategic role in the field of low threshold service provision in their countries
and at EU level:
– They manage low threshold harm -and -risk reduction services for drug users, sex workers,
migrants, youth.
– They have been involved in several European projects and networks often as project
– In terms of validation, impact and dissemination of results they have an extensive, longstanding
consolidated collaboration with the main ngos, universities, research centres, and
public institutions working in the same specific field, at local, national and European level
Gruppo Abele Association has been in several other partnerships with them for other
European projects and networks.


Lead Partner: Associazione Gruppo Abele onlus
Since 1965, its starting year, Gruppo Abele has always given voice to all
disadvantaged and vulnerable people, such as drug addicted people, HIV/AIDS
people, homeless, young offenders and misfits, migrants, single mothers,
women victims of violence, young women victims of trafficking for sexual
exploitation. Gruppo Abele is aimed at cultural and political commitment to build social justice.
Gruppo Abele has always been linking welcome and culture with the idea of turning social practice
into thought. For this reason it edits magazines and, books on social and education issues.
Università della Strada – the training agency – organizes training programmes for social workers
and professionals. All the activities are financed by public funds (municipalities, Piemonte Region
and other Regions, Ministries, National Health Service) banking and corporate foundations, NGOs
and private donations. Gruppo Abele activities involve more than 130 people, employees and
consultants. A great contribution is given by volunteers. Organisational structure contemplates 4
major areas, each dealing with specific issues (e.g. low threshold; victims support; drug addiction
treatment programmes; training; research and documentation). It has previously carried out
numerous projects with institutional entities and civil associations.

Website: www.gruppoabele.org
Contact: [email protected]

APDES – Agência Piaget Para o Desenvolvimiento –
(Piaget Agency for Development):
Agência Piaget para o Desenvolvimento (APDES) is a Portuguese non-profit
organization, founded in 2004 to promote integrated development. APDES works
with communities and people in vulnerable situations (unemployed people,
prisoners, elderly people, foster children, drug users, sex workers, among others) aiming to
improve the access to health, employment and education and enhancing social integration and
cohesion. APDES also aims to strengthen active citizenship and community participation, through
the enhancement of citizens’ power to exercise their rights and responsibilities. Its core principles
are: Human Rights Protection, Action Research and Evaluation Methodologies, Participative and
Proximity Models of Intervention; Empowerment and Citizenship; Activism and Policy Action;
Transdisciplinary Approaches. Therefore, APDES profile is oriented to: (a) providing proximal
intervention services to vulnerable people and communities at national and international
contexts, (b) producing critical understanding and research on the health and social reality and
changing and advocating for fair health and social policies.
APDES has around 50 collaborators from areas as wide as Psychology, Sociology, Social Service,
Anthropology, Nursing, Chemistry, Economics and Management.

Website: www.apdes.pt
Contact: [email protected]

Foundation The Rainbow Group (RG) is an Amsterdam-based NGO committed to
people with social problems, such as homelessness, drug and alcohol abuse and
psychiatric disorders. The organisation provides low-threshold health and social
services, such as day centres and night shelters, psychosocial support, drug
consumption rooms and needle exchange programmes. Furthermore, RG provides social support
through buddy projects.
RG employs more than 150 professionals and works with 1000 volunteers. The organisation runs 9
drop-in centres, 4 drug consumption rooms, and 3 needle exchange programmes, where more
than 97.000 syringes have been exchanged in 2010. RG has a low-threshold approach, hands on
mentality and a lot of experiences in harm reduction and involving target groups at all stages of
service delivery and decision-making.
FRG has a solid governance structure, consisting of Board of Directors, Advisory Board and
Managing Director (Chief Executive). In 1996, RG received the official Dutch approval for not-forprofit
organisations (CBF).
In addition to the work at the local, practical and grass-root level, RG has always been committed
to international cooperation. For more than 15 years, RG has been involved in European and
international organisations and projects. The aim of the international involvement is to exchange
experience and knowledge, to stimulate mutual learning and understanding, to improve the
accessibility and quality of services for vulnerable and marginalised people and to influence
policies, targeting these particular groups.

Website: www.deregenboog.org
Contact: [email protected]

Villa Maraini Foundation (VM) is one of the leading organization in
Italy active in the field of substance abuse prevention and
treatment. During more than 30 years of activity, VM has radically increased its activities and
services, becoming a reference centre on all drug abuse related issues at international level. VM
offers a wide range of services and programmes to people affected by drug and/or alcohol
addiction and their families, reaching more than 3.000 people annually. These services include
residential and semi-residential therapeutic communities, a clinic centre for pharmacological
therapies, outreach street units, emergency unit, drop-in centre and night shelter, helpline service,
a labour cooperative for job orientation, support activities in prison for drug offenders, training
courses for specialists and volunteers.
The staff is composed by social workers, medical doctors, psychologists and administrators, for a
total of 80 employees. Moreover, the foundation can count on the support of a great number of
As affiliate of the Italian Red Cross, VM is member of the Red Cross Movement and since 2004, it
organizes training courses on drug abuse issues for Red Cross/Red Crescent Societies from all over
the world. More than 200 youth workers and volunteers have participated at these training, as
well as at study visits in Italy to see in practice the work conducted every day by our staff and

Website: www.villamaraini.it
Contact: [email protected]

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