This pandemic is truly one of the most dangerous challenges we have faced in our lifetime and people affected by addiction and those in recovery and their families were not the exception. Moreover, the restrictions do not affect everyone equally. Particularly vulnerable are those experiencing multiple disadvantages coupled with drug addiction. With schedules disrupted, medical and psychological care restricted and support networks shut down, the COVID-19 pandemic has jeopardize individual’s recovery.

It is my belief that the most vulnerable among those, especially women, children and young people must be supported, with guidance, equipment and concrete life-saving services as they fight the virus, as it is absolutely critical to save lives.  But let’s not forget that the addiction and recovery don’t stop with the pandemic.

Read the full statement by Mulka Nisic, Celebrate Recovery. 
On June 26th, AYICRIP in partnership with WFAD and ECAD joined hands to commemorate the World Drug Day with a webinar on the UNODC theme: Better knowledge for Better care.

Amy Ronshausen, International President of WFAD opened the webinar, which you can read here. 

We thank all speakers and participants for a wonderful webinar. The recording of which will be made available.

A statement by the WFAD on the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking
Written by Mr. Robert DuPont. 
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International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, June 26 2020: Better Knowledge for Better Care
Today on the World Drug Day, not only the World Drug Reports are published but WFAD members across the globe are commemorating the day.

"Addressing the world drug problem requires responses that are based on facts, solidarity and compassion" said UNODC Executive Director Ms Waly.
Read the full statement.
Spread #FactsForSolidarity for a better knowledge and better care. 

On June 26th, African Youths Initiative on Crime Prevention, in partnership with WFAD and ECAD, welcomes you to a one-day seminar in commemoration of the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.

Theme: Better knowledge for better care
Time: June 26th 2020, 14:00 CEST (Stockholm). Convert time here

Welcome to join us via zoom: Meeting ID: 882 9037 6332, password: 413040. 

Agenda for the World Drug Day

14:00: Arrival

14:00-14:05 - Opening Remarks/Overview of the webinar, Chris Ibe

14:05-14:10 - Brief about WFAD, Regina Mattsson

14:10-14:35 - Achievement of Better Knowledge for Better Care in Post COVID 19 Drug Abuse Campaign; the Role of Prevention, Amy Stanhley Ronshausen

14:25- 14:35 - The Campaign Against Illicit Drug Trafficking in Post COVID 19; the role of partnership between Europe and Africa, Erik Leijonmarck

14:35-14:40 - Effect of Drug Abuse Amongst Pregnant Women; the Nigerian experience, Nkechika Ibe

14:40-14:50 - Self awareness and the ‘accountability tree’, Eniola Joshua Olamide

14:50-15:00 - Member's collaboration; AYICRIP and HTL experience, Tove Karlsson

15:00-15:10 - Drug Abuse Prevention amongst Children; the Smart Club approach, Slim Liden

15:10-15:20 - Q&A

15:20-15:30 - Closing remarks, Felix Iziomoh
Uganda Youth Development Link (UYDEL*) response towards gender based violence and alcohol abuse during the lockdown. 

The COVID 19 pandemic globally has had a devastating negative impact especially in low income countries like Uganda who have o welfare system and medical care is wanting. Families and children in the city were caught off-guard as Government struggled to draw a strategy to deal with the pandemic both at medical and social behavioral level. Governments declared lockdown and everything stood at stand still. The initial 14 days of lock down appeared manageable, then 21 and another 21 then things become worse. Children and their families depending on small informal business closed, capital eaten up and didn’t know what to happen next. We saw an increased in enforcing the lockdown and stay at home policies.

UYDEL received distress calls from some our 1,500 young people we serve daily in our drop in centers that life had become unbearable, there was a lot of hunger, and some violence was inflicted on children. Children trying to cope in the pandemic were far worse off and some taken play by the exploiters in the name of giving food (exchange for sex). There was a spike and increase of sexual exploitation and abuse of children in the informal settlement and slums. Gladly we requested for support from OAK Foundation, who responded positively to this emergency to assist and help over 1500 children in Kampala city who were scattered in the city.

UYDEL Response: With support from donors, we have put together hygiene basket composed of wash stands with buckets, soap and Dettol, with informational brochures that were distributed through our networks and with our partners in urban communities, and in support of local government leadership. We are mobilizing and supporting youth in our networks who know how to sew to make artisanal face masks that can be made available to the wider community on sale at reasonable cost.

Read the full UYDEL report on their response towards GBV and alcohol abuse during the COVID-19 lockdown.

UYDEL is a member organisation of WFAD, with representation in the WFAD International Board through Mr. Rogers Kasirye, Vice-President of the Board.
Ikenna Daniel Molobe, Unified Initative for a Drug Free Nigeria, has co-authored a policy paper on "Migrant Communities and COVID-19 Response in Sub-Saharan Africa" which has been pubblished in the Pan African Medical Journal. The paper is timely and has been disseminated to relevant agencies.
Despite the high prevalance and numerous adverse health consequences, many individuals with substance use do not seek proper treatment. Therefore, this study aimed to explore the treatment seeking pattern of relapse cases in Bangladesh. 

Iqbal Masud's (et al. 2020) study showed that a combination of treatment is common in Bangladesh for relapse cases of substance use disorders. Long term follow up is needed to see the ultimate outcome.

Read the report/article here
Welcome to a Webinar on the Global Impacts of Covid-19!
Drug Free America Foundation is partnering with the WFAD to bring together our global partners in drug demand reduction to speak on the impacts of COVID-19 in their region. Don't miss this opportunity to hear from individuals representing at least 15 countries! 

Gloabl Impacts of COVID-10 
Wednesday, June 17, 2020
at 8:00 AM EDT (14:00 CEST)

Participants will gain a better understanding of:
- Global impacts of Covid-19
- Gender specific issues 
- Adapting approaches to prevention, treatment, and recovery related work
- Resources needed to be effective during the Crisis

In order to participate in the Webinar register here.

After registration, you will receive a confirmation email with a code and information how to access the Webinar channel ‘Zoom’.

Access the draft agenda here. 

While the initiation of recovery is mostly triggered by individual, psychological change and social triggers, sustaining recovery is more strongly predicted by opportunities provided by the community. It is therefore important to build local communities to support social cohesion. The Webinar invited Professor David Best who provided a theoretical background for recovery cities and the main principals, Alexander Zugic and Boro Goic provided presentations on the practical implementation of the ideas around recovery in the Balkans. The Webinar was introduced by WFAD's Linda Nilsson and moderated by Mulka Nisic. 

See documents and presentations by clicking on each speaker's name. 

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