World Largest Rehab Center Visited by Märt Vähi
The San Partirignano Center: Pictured is the noon meal time in the San Partignano Center dining hall in which 1300 men and women, with addiction problems, are enrolled for planned recovery period of three to four years.
Presently Co-Founder of Village of Hope, Märt Vähi is attending the 5th International Workshop, designed for a small selected group of participants from around the world. The Estonian Ministry of Justice proposed to send Märt as a delegate to the 10 day Workshop. Though totally opposite of most government medical treatment programs, the San Partignano Center incorporates many of the principles on which the Village of Hope uses.
Märt Vähi(right) and dr.Antonio Bochini a former addict himself and in leadership at San Partignano visited Estonia last year and was sent by the Estonian President to visit the Village of Hope. At the time Dr. Bochini remarked how similar our programs dealing with addiction were.
During the Workshop now presently taking place Märt remarked: " Though a secular program, not professing any particular faith or religion, I am amazed at the unique Christian principles of love, care, discipleship and dedication, I see in sincere action here! I have met former addicts who, with a big smile on their face, have now stayed on as full time volunteers, just because of their thankfulness and desire to help others. It is amazing to see!"
San Partignano, presently has over 1300 participants, with all living and working on the 600 acre property nestled on the Apennine Mountain Range in the northern half of Italy, in view of the San Marino Principality close to the Adriatic Sea. San Padrignano is just about 1 hour south of Bologna and about the same distance east of Florence.
Positive Economy Forum: During the same time, the delegates of the International Workshop, were able to attend the two day Forum hosted by San Patrignano.
The Forum hosted leading European and Italian leaders and companies who viewed economic strengths and wealthy companies sharing their profits to support non profit organizations in meeting social needs, through grants, support, helping provide job skills, self support through industry and a variety of ideas. San Patrignano itself generates with over 16 various industries and services, 15 million euro or $20 million annually to cover it's own costs with donors contributing an equal amount toward the annual 30 million euro or $50,000 million budget!
Started 38 years ago by an quite ordinary businessman and devote Roman Catholic, Vincenzo Muccioli, owned a series of small restaurants and exclusive hotel in the area. Mr. Muccioli's, tirelessly worked and saw much of his vision fulfilled before passing. His vision erupted into the hearts of friends, ordinary people and business colleagues, into what it is today. With a staff of over 200 there is an additional 100 full time volunteers, most of them former addicts, who serve tirelessly with the joy of helping others like they were themselves.
Of the 1300, 400 are women and over 70 from countries outside of Italy. "I met with those from many nations including Italians who have never left after spending 4 years in recovery and now have served presently up to 7 years without any plans to leave, as they life has become so meaningful and full of joy in serving others" stated Märt Vähi.
Märt went on to state: " My heart is moved and challenged to realize what we as Christians ought to be doing to expand the Kingdom of God with every bit of equal fervor if not more, when I see all of this. Though surprisingly much of what we are doing at the Village of Hope is very similar, yet without question I am personally motivated to reevaluate, carefully rethink many things through and let God speak to our hearts in the light of all I am experiencing, seeing and learning this week "