An exploratory study of factors that contributed to substance abuse by service users' at Newlands Park Rehabilitation Centre.
Substance abuse is a major social problem with far-reaching implications. Substance abuse is a critical problem in South Africa and across all segments of the population and in some way, impacts on all members of our society. The challenge is to explain why people engage in behaviours that they know will harm them. The aim of the study was to understand how people came to abuse substances, by exploring the factors that contribute to substance abuse by recovering service users at Newlands Park Rehabilitation Centre. The ecosystems perspective was used to guide the study. The study used an exploratory design as it attempted to explore new insights into factors contributing to substance abuse by service uses at Newlands Park Rehabilitation Centre. A qualitative research was used to understand the reasons that govern this behavior. Convenience sampling was used as a sampling technique. Ten participants were selected from a group of twenty service users that were in their last week of the rehabilitation program at Newlands Park Rehabilitation Centre. Semi-structured interviews were used as a primary technique for data collection. The data was analyzed thematically. The findings of the study reveal that there are several factors that led respondents’ to abuse substances. These are intrapersonal factors that both initiated and maintained the abuse of substances by respondents. The results from the study also show interpersonal and environmental factors that contributed to respondents’ abuse of substances. It is recommended that prevention and treatment programs for substance abuse take account of intrapersonal, interpersonal and environmental factors that contribute to substance abuse.