Thursday, July 25, 2024

SAN-KER observes intl day against drug abuse


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By Our Reporter

Shillong: To observe the International Day Against Substance Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, the Mawkhar Presbyterian Church, Dong Mission in collaboration with SAN-KER, Meghalaya’s first and only private rehabilitation centre organised a procession where people of all ages, but mainly youth participated. This was followed by a special programme at KJP Higher Secondary School here on Saturday. This year’s theme was, “Think Health, Not Drugs.” Accordingly the procession was meant to be a health walk in the anti-drugs campaign. The walk which started from Dr H Gordon Robert’s Hospital, Jaiaw and crisscrossed Riatsamthiah-Wahingdoh-Unsohsun-Mawkhar to culminate at KJP Higher Secondary School was flagged off by Pastor DE Syiem in the presence of the Founder of SAN-KER Dr Sandy Syiem.

The procession led by Dr Syiem along with church elders and members of various Dorbars also saw the participation of hundreds of concerned citizens which included young children, adults, students of St. Edmund’s College and Martin Luther Christian University including the doctors, staffs as well as the recovering patients of SAN-KER.

The participants carried placards in their hands and shouting slogans like “We do not want to take drugs”, “Crush Drugs, “Drugs could be your nightmare”, “Don’t let them crush you” besides others to spread awareness among the people to stay away from such abuses which can have an adverse effects on the life of a person.

Later, while speaking at the function held at KJP Girls Higher Secondary School, Dr Syiem lamented the fact that out of every 100 affected persons, only 10 or 15 percent turn to rehabilitation centres for treatment, thereby succeeding in living fairly normal lives and getting back to their employment.

Dr Syiem said substance abuse is like a disease which can be as chronic as other diseases such as Diabetes and Blood Pressure and while it cannot be completely cured it can be treated. He said it requires strong will and determination from a person and the love and support of family members to be able to cope with this disease.

Meanwhile, twenty recovering addicts from SANKER Hospital shared their testimony. They narrated how they got into substance abuse, how their lives were nearly destroyed, and how they were now on the path to recovery.

Seeing the adverse effect that substance abuse can bring to the society concerned, headman of Mission Compound, GS Basan informed that the locality has offered the community hall to be used once a week by Dr Sandi Syiem and his Institute for conducting awareness sessions relating to substance abuse so as to bring about change in the society.

On this day, prizes were also distributed to the winners in the painting and drawing competition which was conducted on Saturday morning.

Meanwhile, the Day was also observed at Mawlai Mawiong Rim on Saturday. The National Service Scheme volunteers of Umshyrpi college visited about 100 houses in Mawiong Rim Block III, IV and V and held counselling sessions with the families while also distributing pamphlets on the issue.

In the evening the Nehru Yuva Kendra, Shillong and the Dorbar Shnong Mawiong Rim organised a talk on the theme of peer pressure, HIV/AIDS and drugs.


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