Joseph's Corner at Westgate Deanery

Kairos Volume 18, Issue 8

Relationships with people suffering from drug or alcohol related issues can feel like torture; watching while someone you love is suffering and feeling powerless to change their situation. Many drug and alcohol services are offered for the individuals with an addiction but what about the people surrounding those who are addicted? The domino effects are often far-reaching, crossing generations and touching the wider community through our relationships. Joseph’s Corner is a unique professional counselling service for families, friends and carers that aims to stop the spread of these adverse effects.

Joseph’s Corner was established by the Westgate Deanery seven years ago and is an exciting initiative that is proactive and responsive, aiming to offer a more encompassing approach to the age old challenges of substance abuse. Most recently, a fantastic collaboration took place right in the heart of Footscray: we approached Forges to create a window display of the work of Joseph’s Corner and they responded in many more ways than we ever expected.

We had seen a very small window that was often empty and put a proposal to Forges that a bright community service display might be of benefit to us both. We wanted the people walking in Footscray to know about what was being done locally for families of drug and alcohol affected people – sometimes the barrier to finding a service is just the lack of knowledge that it exists.

Instead of offering us the small window we had our eye on, Forges suggested that somewhere more prominent might be in order. We were delighted with the front window in the Nicholson Street Mall and with the creative and vibrant representation of Joseph’s Corner! The biblical adage, ‘Ask and you shall receive’ has never rung more true. It was also refreshing to have received so much more than was asked for, reminding us yet again never to put limits on what we might expect once we have found the courage to ask. 

This type of involvement is essential to helping Joseph’s Corner strengthen relationships in the community. We
need everyone who reads this article to become involved simply by letting others know about our service. You
may never know who the service might assist as a result of you mentioning it to just one person.

There are people walking with those who are addicted. The purpose of Joseph’s Corner is to walk with those family members and friends who have been previously walking alone (Lk 24:15).