As the number of substance abusers continues to rise in Brazil, it is increasingly critical to thoroughly assess the change efforts being made in response to the national issue. Therapeutic communities are one of the leading solutions to the addiction crisis. There are a vast number of such organizations, yet relapse rates remain high, and the number of substance abusers consistently increases. Individuals seeking long-term sobriety and a sense-of-meaning in life may not be able to depend entirely on the current efforts offered for addiction recovery. This phenomenological qualitative study employed semi-structured interviews to examine the strategies and measures for success that therapeutic community service providers utilize. Challenges service providers experience in their work guiding individuals to a greater quality of life was also investigated. Twenty-five key findings revealed insights about therapeutic community operations, residents seeking sobriety, and service providers leading these organizations. Implications for positive social change in addiction recovery were determined.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dissertations (EdD) -- Organizational leadership; Drug addiction -- Treatment -- Brazil; Addicts -- Rehabilitation -- Brazil; Therapeutic communities -- Brazil -- Case studies

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Fraizer, Lani;