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Miruma is a residential diversionary program in Cessnock for female offenders with mental health and drug and alcohol abuse issues. The 11 bed facility opened in April 2011 and, to end June 2012, has had 53 women commence the program. Of the 53, three women returned for a second time and have now been successful in their return to the community. There has been an approximated 60% success rate for this complex group remaining in the community for two years.
Miruma provides the opportunity for residents who may be experiencing difficulties in adjusting to lawful community life, to gain stability by way of enhanced supervision. This is facilitated by referral to and liaison with various community agencies including drug and alcohol services, residential rehabilitation programs, Centrelink, TAFE NSW and Housing NSW. Promotion of life skills including budgeting, nutrition and general health care are a focus of the program.