Aftercare is considered part of the social welfare programs destined to provide assistance to specific social groups in need such as prison inmates, substance abusers, deviant juveniles and people with disabilities. This could take the form of guidance, counseling and material and/or moral support. Aftercare programs are generally destined to help restore family relationships and repairing bridges with the community in general and to overcome the difficulties of integrating social life after being excluded for some time. Although The concept “aftercare” has been traditionally limited to assistance given to inmates of penal institutions after being set free. This study intends to widen the scope of the concept to include delinquent juveniles and those receiving treatment for drug abuse. The main aim of this study is to question the role of aftercare in the process of social integration. It starts by investigating the availability of aftercare programs and their effectiveness in three different institutions in the state of Qatar. It intends to help management in these institution to develop support programs for the targeted groups. Research was based on a qualitative approach in the hope of securing accurate and detailed data through cases studies. Non-structured individual interviews, focus groups and individuals' records were used to collect data. A total of (41 cases) were investigated; (18) cases from Qatar Foundation for Social Protection & Rehabilitation (QFSPR); (14) cases from Qatar Penal Institution; and (09) cases from the Juveniles Social Protection Department; (Ministry of Social Affaires). Results have confirmed the investigated institutions had run welfare programs; including psychological, social, religious and recreational activities, with the last two having the most positive impact for those involved. Aftercare programs in these institutions were varied in scope and efficiency. While QFSPR had a relatively comprehensive aftercare program, based on following-up cases after the initial treatment and rehabilitation periods. It includes family reconciliation, providing certificate of good behavior, help with employment and legal assistance in courts. In this case, aftercare programs can last two years until consultants were satisfied of the total recovery of patients from substance abuse. In case of the Juvenile Social Protection Department only partial aftercare relying on conditional release of cases under probation existed. The third case, the correctional institution had no aftercare programs as they were considered not part of their principle objectives .This study confirmed beyond doubt the importance of aftercare programs in restoring bridges with family, friends and colleagues after being excluded for various reason. It shows that such programs were an effective and efficient measure to achieve social integration and bring back to society part of its human capital badly needed to ensure sustained development. The study suggested few important recommendations for public authorities to enhance efforts deployed in this field with the aim of preserving society's most valuable assets; its human capital. Prof. L. ANSER et all, (2013)


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