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Итальянский Красный Крест

Mapping of
National Society Activities  
HIV and AIDS Harm Reduction Tuberculosis
Prevention   ItRC plays a fundamental role through its Youth component as described in the Best Practice section See Best Practice section See Best Practice section
Counseling     See Best Practice section See Best Practice section
Care     See Best Practice section See Best Practice section
Advocacy     See Best Practice section See Best Practice section
Partners/ Networking   ItRC has a membership in the National Council of the Association on AIDS (Consulta AIDS). This is an opportunity for the ItRC to share, at national level, best practices. The Italian Red Cross has demonstrated a strong commitment towards the inclusion of other National Societies in actions in favour of people affected by drug abuse, through organizing  training courses and rising consensus on the implementation of a humanitarian drug policy.
Considering Villa Maraini as a best practice to be replicated, the IFRC, supported by an Italian Red Cross fund, is promoting and coordinating trainings in Villa Maraini in favour of Red Cross/Red Crescent National Societies willing to take a role in support of problematic drug users. Since 2004 Villa Maraini Foundation have been conducting trainings on a comprehensive harm reduction approach to drug use treatment for representatives of Red Cross Red Crescent World, so as to enable those lacking expertise to be able to implement drug abuse programmes in their own countries.
Eighteen trainings have been conducted so far, letting thirty three NSs improve their skills and carry out, when feasible, programmes in support of drug addicts and prevention of infectious diseases.
Technical advice, including assessment, programme support and ways to reduce the stigma and discrimination associated with drug use, are provided by the Italian Red Cross to NSs. Teachings, also include, how to care and integrate or reintegrate drug users into social life.
Many RC/RC NSs have started or improved their action in favour of problematic drug users opening centers, starting outreach units or conducting awareness campaign and advocacy among public authorities and general population.
The project described in the Best Practice Section is in the framework of the Health Programme 2008-2013 of the European Commission. The project has partners grass-root organizations from Italy, The Netherlands, Czech Republic andSlovakia, and is implemented in strict cooperation with Hospitals and Institutes for Infectious Diseases of the different Nations.
Best practices   ItRC Youth Component runs the Peer education programme «Learn the ABC: Abstinence, Be faithful, Condom». It promotes the adoption of healthy lifestyles and safe behaviours among young people (age range: 14 — 26), placing particular emphasis on prevention addresses STDs and discrimination against people living with HIV. It was launched in 2006 as a biennial Campaign in partnership with the Ministry of Health and since 2008 it has become a permanent program of the Italian Red Cross Youth.  

An important action specifically targeted to alleviate problems related to the use of drugs have been developed since 1976, when Villa Maraini was set up as an Italian Red Cross activity. From 1988, as to ensure an easier management for this activity, this action is being carried out, wholly, by the Villa Maraini Foundation. Since its beginning the Villa Maraini has grown up into a wide range of services delivered to more than 700 people a day, including therapeutic communities at a three-level treatment programme, a 24-hour emergency unit and an out-patient-clinic, street units, a drop-in-centre, night shelters, a prison outreach programme, family support group and a Social cooperative for reintegration independently run by ex addicts. These services have developed in response to the needs of patients, and now able to assist more than 3,000 users and their families each year. The action in Villa Maraini mainly focuses on building trust with drug users, catching them in times of need, or when they are ready to be helped. That brings Villa Maraini into contact with some of the society’s most marginalized and stigmatized individuals — including the 30 per cent of drug users ignored by other agencies because they are illegal immigrants. The strategy to approach those «problematic» individuals includes former drug users’ active involvement. Former drug users are fundamental in that kind of intermediary work, especially in difficult environments, such as «the streets». Approximately one third of Villa Maraini staff are ex-users, mostly in charge of low threshold services.

Active outreach, peer education, empowerment, flexible approach are fundamental to the Villa’s unique ethos, built upon the fundamental RC/RC principles, which qualifies the approach and is visible by the RC emblem exposed over the Vans and RC volunteers’ clothes.
Street Units work in close cooperation with local and State Police Forces in case of withdrawal syndromes involving drug users under temporary arrest or awaiting trial, providing the most appropriate treatment, oral methadone included. That has contributed to reduce significantly, cases of self-harming acts and aggressive behaviours.  

The ItRC is supporting a new project, named Imp.Ac.T., launched by Villa Maraini to use the outreach work as a tool for promoting a new kind of provider-initiated HIV and TB counselling and testing, specifically tailored to hard-to-reach groups. The general objective of the project is to broaden the access to HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis (TB) testing, prevention, treatment and care for vulnerable groups, such as intravenous drug users (IDUs) and migrants DUs. In this way, the project will contribute also to reduce the gap between drug users/migrants and health care services and to reduce inequalities in the access to treatment.


Italian Red Cross
ERNA Contact Information Head Head ERNA Contact Person ERNA Contact Person
Name Surname Francesco Rocca Patrizia Ravaioli Federico Fadiga Fabio Patruno
Role in the National Society Extraordinary Commissioner Secretary General Head of International Relations Office ERNA President
E-mails segreteria.commissario@cri.it s.dirgen@cri.it international.relations@cri.it f.patruno3@gmail.com
Phone numbers +39 06 47596880 +39 06 47596880 +39 06 47596880 0039 3386988776
Fax +39 06 4759426 +39 06 4759426 +39 06 4759426 0039 0665753089
Post address   Croce Rossa Italiana
Comitato Centrale
Via Toscana 12
00187 Roma
Croce Rossa Italiana
Comitato Centrale
Via Toscana 12
00187 Roma
Croce Rossa Italiana
Comitato Centrale
Via Toscana 12
00187 Roma
Strada statale 140 n. 11/B 00040 Marino (Italy)

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