IOGT is a global social movement for the promotion of a lifestyle free from alcohol and other drugs. IOGT means Life Set Free.

We promote the lifestyle of the 21st century and empower people to live a richer and freer, happier and healthier life. Overcoming addiction, recovery and rehabilitation from substance use problems and getting a second, third… chance in life is what our members care deeply about and work heart-driven to provide for people in their communities.

In our treatment, rehabilitation, recovery and social work we are

  1. Passionate about helping other people find pure joy of life, and we are
  2. Taking the lead with regard to promoting a lifestyle of dedication and participation in making our communities and societies better.

RehabThe lifestyle of the 21st century is about living free from alcohol and other drugs. But it doesn’t stop there. A rich and free lifestyle
is not only about the absence of harmful substances and behaviors. A richer and freer life is also about how to endow it with meaning – it’s about leading a self-determined, fulfilled, conscious and compassionate, and a healthy life.

We believe such a life – however it unfolds concretely – is possible for everyone. It’s possible for all children and youth, for all who never used alcohol or other drugs in their lives, and for all who need to overcome and recover from substance use problems and need a new chance to build the life they wish for.

Addiction is a disease that can be overcome and IOGT is there to be help, support, encourage and empower anyone who needs help, to overcome addiction and build the life they wish for.

Our Approach

iogt heartwhite_rehabAlcohol and other drugs are highly addictive substances. Their use can lead to addiction. Addiction is an illness that impacts affected people on all levels of their lives: Physically, mentally, socially and economically.

The disease of addiction can be treated, which opens the possibility to most of the addicted people of a dignified life, free from alcohol and other drugs, re-integrated in society and actively participating in their communities.

A moral imperative

Therefore, IOGT International highlights and re-emphasizes the moral imperative for society to invest in treatment and rehabilitation and support people with substance use disorders on their way back to a healthy life and back into society. These efforts are important for the addicts themselves but also for their environments, their closest family and relatives, colleagues and co-workers, and friends.

Evidence-based treatment and rehabilitation measures can thus unfold a preventive effect, for example considering children of alcoholics.

Rehabilitation work by IOGT organisations takes place in a non-statutory setting and takes into account the social, cultural, religious and political environment of the respective country. In IOGT we recognise that substance use disorder are particularly gender and culture specific.

Rehabilitation work undertaken by IOGT organisations is carried out by committed and trained volunteers and professionals. We work heart-driven to end stigma and to create a society where anyone who needs help for substance use problems can get it.

Rehabilitation is an overall term for a number of different approaches in different countries designed to help anyone who is addicted to alcohol and other drugs. These are, for example, specialised hospitals for inpatient treatment for alcohol- and illicit drug-dependent men and women. There are advisory bodies with professional staff and/or volunteers who work regular office hours. There are aftercare facilities where people are cared for to empower them to overcome dependence and to prepare people for reintegration into society.

There are telephone help-lines for people with addiction problems and their families, normally run around the clock, to provide a first contact to start recovery.

Our Impact: Overcoming Addiction

intercultural_002_sThe impact of IOGT International and our Member Organizations through our rehabilitation and social work is:

Overcoming addictions, rebuilding families and communities, enabling healthy lifestyles, empowering active citizenship

Through the work of IOGT Germany in 2014, 3000 volunteers were involved in addiction rehabilitation work.

IOGT Germany’s social work conducted more than 700 self-help groups in 2014, to empower people to lead a life free from alcohol and other drugs.

In 2014, CIJ held more than 9.000 family clubs in Mexico, empowering families and communities to create supportive environments for people in recovery.
Through family clubs we facilitate that families solve substance use problems together, which allows everyone to heal while the addicted family member can stay in their familiar environment with maximum support.

In Uganda, Hope and Beyond answered more than 1400 helpline calls to respond with immediate support for people with substance use problems.

IOGT Denmark conducted 3000 face-to-face talks in 2014 in order to provide support to people with substance use problems and people in recovery.

Through the internet IOGT International and our Member Organisations together reached 2 million people through web-based services in 2014.

The global IOGT movement provided more than 2000 outreach services in addiction help facilities, home visits, hospitals etc.). Worldwide, we organised more than 2000 self-help groups, 50.000 face-to-face talks and involved more than 5000 volunteers in addiction rehabilitation.

50.000 people benefited from our counselling services last year. And we were asked for help via telephone helplines more than 15.000 times last year.

Read more about our impactful work here.

Our Rehab And Social Work

HappyFacces_peaceAbove all, there are support and self-help groups where people meet others with similar problems, where they can help each other to strengthen their personal possibilities. Here, the Family Clubs, which operate in many countries under the umbrella of IOGT, are a special form of this type of group work.

Our members working in the field of rehabilitation and social work are role models and examples that a life free from alcohol and other drugs is not only a pattern of behaviour but also an option to improve one’s quality of life.

In IOGT we recognise that every human being is unique. We therefore help and support the addicted person to reach their personal goals, taking into account the individual economic, educational and social conditions of the person. In IOGT, we include the family members of the addicted person in this comprehensive approach to rehabilitation.

Heart-Driven for overcoming addiction

We work with a comprehensive approach to help people overcome addiction. We care for the whole person as well as their families and communities – because we do understand every aspect of addiction. In over 160 years of heart-driven work to prevent addiction and to help people overcome it and rebuild their lives, we have acquired vast experience and deep compassion.

Read all about our approach and philosophy to rehabilitation and social work here.

IOGT Rehab Core Group

Our Member Organisations working in this field can delegate members to the IOGT International Rehab Core Group – our expert body to discuss and develop our rehabilitation and social work.

Our Rehab Core Group continues to offer technical support to those Member Organisations who want to start rehabilitation work in their own country.

The chair of the Rehab Core Group for the period 2014 to 2018 is Christian Bölckow.

Get in touch with Christian

Christian web1Board Member

Christian Bölckow

Hamburg, Germany

 christian.boelckow [at] iogt.org

Christian’s Blog Corner

Christian is our expert for rehabilitation and social work, and is thus the chairman of the Rehabilitation Core Group in IOGT International.

Meet Christian in the social media

Meet Christian on Facebook

Feel free to get in touch with Christian if you are interested in joining our Rehab Core Group, of you have questions about our Rehabilitation and Social Work and/ or if you need help for yourself or a dear one.

Recovery Resources

Sober Grid – The #1 Sober App

Sober Grid is an iPhone and Android application that enables sober people to meet with other sober people nearby. It is the number one App to bring people together who choose to enjoy life free from alcohol; the number one app that supports people in recovery, anytime, anywhere.

IOGT International and Sober Grid have partnered in order to boost each other’s work and help more people enjoy a lifestyle free from alcohol and other drugs.

Soberistas – Love Life in Control

Soberistas is an online community for anyone who wants help to stop using alcohol. We provide a safe and secure space where people can offer one another support for alcohol problems. Read around the thousands of blogs and discussions for inspiration and motivation. Find out more about Soberistas membership options here and start your alcohol-free journey today.

Lucy Rocca, the founder of Soberistas, also has a guest blog on our Blog Portal.

Family Clubs

Here you can find further information about the methodology behind Family Clubs and a presentation about Alcoholics in Treatment from around the world under the umbrella of WACAT, the World Association of the Clubs of Alcoholics in Treatment.