RED RIBBON WEEK- Shattering the Myths on Drugs Campaign
Communities Against Drug and Substance Abuse (CADASA Trust) a youth organization working against drug and substances last week embarked on a campaign, Red Ribbon Campaign, to remember those who lost their lives as a result of drug and substance abuse.
Speaking at the launch of the Red Ribbon Campaign on Saturday last week, Kambuzuma legislator Honourable Tinashe Maduza lamented the increase in drug and substance abuse saying it currently one of the major social ills compounding our nation with over 65% of admissions at Psych Wards due to drug induced disorders. He further commended the Red Ribbon Campaign saying complements the fight against HIV and AIDS in educating young people on the relationship between drug use and HIV/AIDS.
To achieve the 2030 Agenda on HIV and AIDS, drug and substance abuse programming must be incorporated into the strategies of fighting the pandemic and encouraging young people make smart decisions. The launch was done in partnership with the Zimbabwe Republic Police-Marimba station.
The Red Ribbon Campaign is a brain child of National Family Partnership organization from the USA whose main focus is on drug prevention and promotion of the wellbeing of youth. The Red Ribbon Campaign was launched in 1985 in response to the murder of Drug Enforcement Agent Enrique Camarena whose work had been focused on fighting illegal drug abuse. Therefore, in honour of him, the NFP launched the Red Ribbon Campaign as a catalyst to mobilize communities to educate youths and encourage participation in drug prevention activities.
This campaign was the first of its kind in Zimbabwe and CADASA held various activities. The fight against drug and substance abuse will be very incomplete without addressing the plight of those already addicted hence CADASA has established JUST SAY NO Support Groups in communities that they modelled after Alcoholics Anonymous International.
CADASA has plans in the future to establish a Rehabilitation Centre that is bench-marked against international best practices. The official launch of the Red Ribbon Week Campaign is the symbol of CADASA’s commitment to raise awareness of the death and destruction caused by drugs in Zimbabwe.