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There are now three state-run drug rehabilitation centres in Gauteng, with Johannesburg opening its own facility in Randburg.
YOUTH from disadvantaged communities who are addicted to drugs now have access to treatment at a City rehabilitation centre, opened in Randburg on 5 April.

 

Chad JafthaChad Jaftha, a recovering addict, says parents should play a role in raising their children Executive Mayor Amos Masondo officially opened the centre, at the Golden Harvest Park in the suburb of Northwold. He was accompanied by members of his mayoral committee for community development, Bafana Sithole; and environment and corporate services; Matshidiso Mfikoe.
 

The centre, at 4 Hunters Road, is aimed at helping young people from disadvantaged communities who cannot afford to seek help in private clinics, of which there are several in Johannesburg.

“As a City we are deeply aware of the growing problem of substance abuse, especially by young people. In recent weeks we have unfortunately seen numerous media reports on the extent of drug abuse among schoolchildren, which led to police raids on some of the schools,” said Masondo.

Johannesburg had acted against this ever-growing problem. It had “established a drug rehabilitation centre, provided the infrastructure and partnered with a capable NGO that will provide the management expertise and take responsibility for the rehabilitation programme”.

“This rehabilitation centre is a partnership between the City of Johannesburg and the South African National Council on Alcoholism and Drugs Dependency [Sanca].”

Sanca runs centres that provide prevention, treatment and aftercare to people and groups affected by substance abuse. It will run and manage the new rehab.

The clinic is the idea of the City’s community development, which works with addicted street children. The objective is to ensure young people who are at risk of using drugs have access to help. It will accommodate 10 patients; participation is either voluntary or by court order.

 

Executive mayor Amos Masondo signs a pledge not to abuse drugsExecutive mayor Amos Masondo signs a pledge not to abuse drugsAddicts will attend a six-week programme that will include medical checks. Treatment will also include physical training sessions, therapy and counselling, and detoxification.
 

After completing the six-week programme, the addict will be expected to attend a 12-week aftercare programme, where they will be involved in the group counselling session. At the end, they will be equipped to live without the use of drugs.

The centre will also help to rebuild communities that have been devastated by drug abuse, that have no affordable facility for assistance.
Chad Jaftha, a recovering drug addict from Westbury, thinks parents can play a major role in helping their children. “Parents, don’t live in denial. Signs are there, communicate with your children and seek help for them as early as possible,” he said.

There are now three state-run rehabs in Gauteng; others are in Magalisburg and Boksburg.

At the opening, Masondo was among many who signed a pledge not to abuse substances.

Drugs commonly used by Johannesburg youth are cocaine, codeine, crack, marijuana, ecstasy, heroin, mandrax and nyaope.

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