Two charity workers have outlined ambitious plans to create a live-in rehabilitation centre for drug addicts in the city – and now they are calling for financial backers to make the dream a reality.
Ric May and Stef Ollandini, both 51, want to tackle the perception of Dundee as a “death toun” and help drug users deal with their problems.
The pair believe working with recovering addicts in a live-in centre on the outskirts of the city could turn more lives around.
They have been working with a number of drug addicts and rough sleepers over the last two decades.
Ric and Stef reckon the centre could offer some refuge for those struggling with addiction and help to tackle the “vicious drug cycle”.
They have already helped drug addicts across the city with their Jesus Dug programme.
The initiative provides homeless people with canine companions in an attempt to change how they’re treated by other people.
Ric said: “The harsh reality is it’s a vicious cycle.
“The model in place at the moment isn’t helping anyone, it’s just putting the other services under pressure.
“We really need a local live-in centre for addicts to spend a year in – the nearest service is in Wales. We think a 100-bed facility would be sufficient for the area.
“Dundee is a death toun – so many are dying because of the impact of addiction.
“We need to address the cycle and offer another solution. We already have a small team of recovering addicts who could come in to help.”
Proposals are at a very early stage – but Ric and Stef have appealed for local businesses, Dundee City Council and NHS Tayside to work together in a bid to offer “genuine help” for the sake of everyone in the city.
Ric added: “It’s crucially down to funding that would make this project work.”