- Programs & Services
A Note from Dan Cain
September 1971: The country was embroiled in a war that was more controversial than any in a generation. Young people were rejecting the values of our country’s leaders and turning to different types of protest, including the widespread use of new, powerful drugs. Soldiers, exposed to cheap narcotics in Southeast Asia, began using them to offset the stress of military conflict that often seemed meaningless and unsupported, only to find that when they returned home those same drugs were exponentially more expensive and difficult to obtain. Many turned to crime to fund the habits that had been developed under fog of war. This environment and these conditions fostered the creation of Eden House, the Midwest’s first therapeutic community.
Many things have changed in the 45 years since that time. One thing that hasn’t is the mission of Eden House, now grown to become RS EDEN, and its commitment to finding or developing services to help the disenfranchised overcome their—mostly self-created—barriers and reach a level playing field.
Beginning as a residential addiction treatment program, Eden quickly evolved as an addiction/corrections program with the passage of the Community Corrections Act. Focusing on the criminal addict, who more often than not used drugs other than (or in combination with) alcohol, it gained a reputation for effective treatment, accountability, and the preservation of public safety. The philosophy, “a total change in lifestyle, not simply getting off drugs,” is the same today as it was over four decades ago.
As the world changed, so did Eden. When more and more people, many of whom were homeless, were referred to outpatient substance abuse treatment, Eden developed transitional treatment housing, where men, and later women and women with their children, could live while they underwent treatment for their addiction. Later still, when vacancy rates were at an all-time low, Eden developed permanent, sober-supportive housing where people could live in communities that shared the values of sobriety, productivity, and law abiding behavior. And more importantly, be held accountable to those values.
RS EDEN is an equal opportunity employer whose mission is to provide recovery, accountability, and support services facilitating individual, family, and community movement from non-productive behavior to responsible, self-sufficient lifestyles.