Dimapur, July 9: ARK Foundation in collaboration with IBAPWO, PTSU and PSTAP with support from the Department of Social Welfare conducted a webinar on “sensitization workshop on substance abuse and prevention” with leaders and members of Pungro Town Student Unions (PTSU) and Private School Teachers Association Pungro (PSTAP), and IBAPWO on July 9. Ketho Angami, president, ARK foundation moderated the programme.
EAC Pungro, Nahuta Tunyi said alcohol and drug abuse in the society is a pertinent issue that needs urgent attention. Recent studies have shown that 74% of people in Nagaland reported of being introduced to substance, and that people significantly from 15 years and above consume alcohol or other substance, out of this majority of the people from the age group of 15-30 years are vastly affected and teenagers are the most prone and worst affected population, he said.
Because of this social problem, there are many other problems like robberies, accidents, extortions, domestic violence and it is also a factor which can spread HIV through sharing of infected injecting equipments. Overcoming this menace calls for a collaborative effort of the Government, public and the NGOs and other CSOs is crucial, he added.
K. Wango Langsym, Assistant Director, Social Welfare Department mentioned about the importance of such a seminar that creates awareness and sensitizes the youth and students on the issue of addiction in the State. This is one objective which the department works upon and there are more programs in the pipeline to which the Department plans to organize in the coming days, he said.
This was followed by a presentation delivered Ketho on the topic “Substance abuse and prevention”. He shared the history of addiction in the State, which started almost three decades back. One of the drugs in concern to which people are getting introduced is a drug called Yabaa (WY- World is yours), and its consumption has been reported in Kohima, Dimapur, Mon and Tuensang. While some cases of few college going students were also reported, this is of great concern, since Yabaa as a stimulant group of drugs is another form of drugs which is very lethal even in itself, he said.
On the management and prevention perspective, he mentioned that primary prevention is the key – that people should be made aware of the harmful effects of drug use and not to ever get introduced into substance use, and treatment through rehabilitation for those who are already in the addictive stage.
Later there was a round of questions and answers. The closing remark was delivered by PSTAP president. (Page News Service)