For over 30 years, San Patrignano has welcomed young men and women with serious problems linked to drug addiction completely free of charge, without requesting any kind of contribution from their families and without state funding.
No kind of ideological or social discrimination is adopted with regard to admitting residents.
The community is currently home to about 1,300 young men and women.
In Botticella, near the town of Novafeltria, San Patrignano has a structure that is dedicated to the first shelter for drug addicts.
Since 1978, San Patrignano has welcomed over 20,000 people, offering them a home, legal and medical assistance and the opportunity to study and learn a trade and to thus change their life and return to being fully respected members of society.
The rehabilitation community operates thanks to 109 volunteers and 313 collaborators and consultants; 32.5% of whom followed a rehabilitation programme here themselves.
The community is also home to about 70 children, the offspring of operators or residents who are currently following a rehabilitation programme here, numerous family units and over 30 minors who have had problems linked to marginalization and drug abuse.
Some of the people at San Patrignano are following a rehabilitation programme as an alternative to a prison sentence. In the last 25 years, the community has replaced over 3,600 years of custodial sentences with rehabilitation programmes, targeting full recovery and reintegration into society and the workplace.
On the basis of sociological and toxicological research carried out by the Universities of Bologna, Urbino and Pavia on a sample of former residents, the percentage of people who fully recover after completing their rehabilitation programme at San Patrignano is over 72%.
The funds required to maintain the young residents and facilities come in part from the activities and goods and services produced, based on the principles of self-management, and for the remaining part from private donations and contributions.
For years, San Patrignano has also been committed to the prevention of drug addiction and abuse through initiatives both inside the community and throughout Italy.
Each year, San Patrignano welcomes hundreds of people and operators from dozens of countries from all over the world.
The community is a “non-governmental organization” (NGO) that has been recognized and accredited by the United Nations with the status of “special advisor to the Economic and Social Council of the UN”.