In 2018, NAADAC (National Association for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors USA) will be working more actively with ACCSA to help structure and standardize addiction professional certification in South Africa. Cynthia Moreno Tuohy, the executive director of NAADAC, has for some time been in communication with ACCSA Director Caleb Atmore on this initiative.
The first step was to become a NAADAC approved provider of CEU/CPD education for professionals in the substance abuse field (This was achieved in 2014). The next step was to produce 300 hours of substance abuse specific education to meet the prerequisite and preparation for international certification of addiction counselling (CADCI, NCACI). ACCSA offers 275 Hours of training currently, and will meet the 300 Hour requirement in the beginning of 2018. The third and final phase next year will be to localize these certifications in South Africa. This process has already been underway with SAQA (South African Qualifications Authority), CHE (Council of Higher Education) and DSD (Department of Social Development).
ACCSA, supported by the Board of Addiction Professionals South Africa, will also be working to partner with NAADAC and NCC AP (National Certification Commission for Addiction Professionals) in creating a NAADAC certification board in South Africa, to begin offering various addiction certifications, beginning with the NCACI (National Certified Addiction Counselor, Level I).
Caleb Atmore, ACCSA Managing Director had this to say: "To professionalize the addiction field in South Africa, and have it seen as a specialization, as it is in the US and other countries, is our primary goal. The substance abuse problem in South Africa has grown to epic proportions. Adequate education must be given to the public and professionals in the field. Many professionals treat addiction as they would any other mental or behavioral problem, but ordinary approaches are not sufficient to deal with the dynamics and defense mechanisms of the disease. Special training and understanding is required."
About ACCSA Website: www.accsa.co.za
About NAADAC Website: www.naadac.org
About NCC AP: Website: https://www.naadac.org/about-the-ncc-ap
About BAPSA Website: www.bapsa.net