Caritas’ Old City Counseling Center (OCCC) opened in 1999, with the objective of helping the increasingly poor population of East Jerusalem and focusing especially on drug abuse issues. It is currently the only organisation in East Jerusalem that gives counseling and support services to drug addicts and their families.
The OCCC is very active in drug prevention. The social workers regularly visit schools in Jerusalem and in the West Bank to raise awareness on drugs and give teenagers tools to respond if they are confronted with the problem. Since 2008, the OCCC runs a specific training aiming at preparing psychologists, social workers and students to work in the field of prevention and intervention against drugs abuse.
The Center is also a safe place for local children and youth to meet during the holidays or after school for activities under the supervison of social workers and trained educators.