Substance abuse intervention programme for Macassar youth

During the first six months of 2017 members of Helderberg Sunrise Rotary Club (HSRC) in Somerset West carried out research in the field of substance abuse in general and especially among youth including school-goers in Macassar.

They found that a notable increment of substance abuse is taking place in that community leading to an increasing disruption of public and personal lives.

Although community leaders as well as public and private organisations are taking a number of initiatives to combat the negative impact of this situation, it was concluded that there were no services available that tackle the basic cause of the problem through prevention and treatment services.

There was a call from the community at large and schools in particular to establish such services .

The HSRC members got the backing of Rotary District D9350’s management, as well as from Rotary District D1600 in The Netherlands to explore the possibilities of setting up and supporting youth substance abuse services initially at the Macassar high schools through partnerships with governmental and private institutions.

Discussions with the provincial departments of Social Development and Education resulted in great support from both institutions for this initiative.

After researching NGOs providing such services in the Helderberg, the Mudita Foundation was identified as the institution that would best address the specific need in question because of its specialised experience in, and focus on, the youth.

Rotary Districts D9350 and D1600 have established a partnership with the aforementioned departments and the Mudita Foundation which now offers youth substance abuse services in Macassar.

A Dutch team of specialists in the field of substance abuse prevention and treatment will visit to support the implementation of these services during the first two weeks of October, through workshops and awareness sessions for stakeholders.

The purpose of the joint project is to operate a substance abuse centre at Macassar High School whereby the other four schools in Macassar will eventually be served at their own locations with the same staff operating from this centre.

The objective of the intervention, is to increase the level of general functioning of pupils who are using or abusing substances and to assist them to reduce their substance use or to achieve sobriety, and to bring relief to affected educators, parents and other role-players and the Macassar community at large by supporting struggling pupils and by informing all relevant stakeholders how to support these adolescents in their daily lives. Call 060 509 2098 for more information.

The project is jointly driven by Ton Houben on behalf of Rotary Districts D9350 and D1600, and Alison Carstens on behalf of The Mudita Foundation.

– Zandvliet High , Macassar Primary , Oklahoma Primary and Marvin Park Primary –