On the occasion of United Nations’ International day against drug abuse and trafficking celebrated each June 26 and the commemoration of the fifth edition of global Day of Action «Support. Don’t punish», ANCE-Togo had organized at Hotel le Merlot in Lomé, a press conference targeting stakeholders working in the prevention and the fight against drugs use.
The commemoration of the international day Support, Don’t punish coincided with the celebration of international day to fight against drugs entitled «Listening first – listening to children and youths is the fundamental process to help them grow healthy and secure».
For those two days, ANCE-Togo, in collaboration with Anti-drug Community Coalitions, held a press conference on June 26, 2017, at hotel le Merlot in Lomé. More than 50 journalists, members of both coalitions from Agbalépédogan and Kélégougan and the two experts from CADCA USA took actively part in this important press conference organized thanks to West Africa Drug Policy Network (WADPN) and West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI) financial support. The main objective is to prevent and reduce the rate of drug use through stakeholders’ sensitization on the importance of listening and discussion with children and youths in order to create healthy and drug free communities.
After the welcome address uttered by Dr. EBEH Fabrice ANCE-Togo Executive Director, the traditional chiefs of Kélégougan and Agbalépédogan expressed their gratitude to ANCE-Togo for its efforts and wish the participants to take into consideration the messages that will come up. As regard CADCA USA representative, they also congratulate ANCE-Togo for the initiative and urged all participants to be active. Dr. EBEH, during the opening ceremony, had expressed a vibrant gratitude to partners for their financial support and not only wish the press conference fulfill its promises which is to raise awareness to facilitate a better care for people using drug in the country but also development great desire to listening to children for drug prevention issues in Togo.
During the PowerPoint presentation on «Listening first-listening to children and youths is the fundamental process to help them grow healthy and secure», Dr. EBEH gave an overview of drug problems globally and particularly in Togo before tackling paradigm of drug primary prevention activities. He explained to participants that drug abuse is not only a matter of free choice operate by individual but also a result of internal and external combination and the prevention requires competences but also children and teenagers will never use drug, those who use it are exposed to vulnerabilities beyond their control such as poverty, violent environment, poor education possibilities and much more.
At the end, he urged different stakeholders to promote prevention interventions, raise awareness of the population to the importance and caring of listening to children and teenagers. Through this initiative, ANCE contributes to death rate reduction due to drug use and promotes a better care for people using drug in Togo, but also inform and sensitize stakeholders on listening children.It is necessary to note that more than 50 participants mainly journalists, representatives of NGOs and grass-roots communities took part actively at this press conference.