Assessing the social value and social return on investment impact of the Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment Court │ Te Whare Whakapiki Wairua
Image: Photograph of artwork created by Steve Gibbs as a Taonga for the AODT Court. See more details below.
The project will evaluate the Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment Court (AODT) / Te Whare Whakapiki Wairua impact to develop an understanding of the social value and social return on investment created by the Court’s interventions.
About the project
The AODT Court is now a permanent court within the criminal justice system of Aotearoa New Zealand. However, it remains important that the impact of the court is properly understood and effectively articulated, particularly as therapeutic courts are still in their relative infancy in New Zealand, and thus, not always well understood or fully appreciated.
The project will evaluate the Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment Court (AODT) / Te Whare Whakapiki Wairua impact in dollar terms – to develop an understanding of the social value and social return on investment created by the Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment Court’s interventions within their particular high-risk high-needs offender cohort. The research will also identify opportunities for further improvements in the AODTC as well as learnings to inform other therapeutic courts and models.
The artwork in the photo above is a Taonga created by Associate Professor Steve Gibbs (Ngāi Tāmanuhiri, Rongowhakaata, Rongomaiwahine, Ngāti Kahungunu). The artwork is on the walls of the AODT courtrooms. It is composed of three panels symbolising the three stages of recovery – Serenity, Courage and Wisdom.
$40,000 over six months for work in 2021 – 2022
About Te Whare Whakapiki Wairua, the Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment (AODT) Court
Te Whare Whakapiki Wairua, the Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment (AODT) Court, was established in Auckland and Waitākere as a pilot in November 2012. In 2019, the then Minister of Justice announced his intention to make the two pilot courts permanent and establish a third court in Waikato. In 2021, Te Whare Whakapiki Wairua ki Kirikiriroa was established at the Hamilton District Court. The AODT Court aims to break the cycle of offending by treating the causes of that offending. It provides an alternative to imprisonment for people whose offending is being driven by alcohol and/or drug substance use disorders. The AODT Court has adapted international best practice principles appropriate for Aotearoa New Zealand. For example, the programme includes the integration of tikanga Māori cultural practices into Court processes, cultural advice and peer support.
Te Hapori Community Advisory Group is the community advisory group to the AODTC. It was formed when the court was established in 2012 and is based on an international model. Its members are from various diverse backgrounds but include members of the recovery community, and various professions. It serves as a source of practical support for the work undertaken in the AODTC, including fundraising to provide participants of the court with targeted financial support to foster and enhance the transformative processes they undertake.
ImpactLab is working alongside Judge Tremewan of the AODT, Te Hapori Community Advisory Group and other key stakeholders to guide the assessment work.
Claire Baldwin at ImpactLab