RUNDU – A former drug addict says the current state of emergency declared by government in light of the Covid-19 pandemic would be an ideal time for addicts to introspect and reform their habits. “As the nation is urging people to stay at home and avoid unnecessary movements, it will be of great benefit as addicts may comply with self-examination on addiction on this 21 days, especially those in lockdown in Khomas and Erongo regions,” said Martin Shikerete, who is currently working on establishing a rehabilitation centre in the Kavango East region.
“This will reduce and avoid addicts from moving around to look for things they are addicted to and shebeens and other places of influence are closed.” Shikerete is working on a rehabilitation project called ‘Namibia Hand of Hope’, which will be a non-profitable project.
According to him, the project is a tool that would be used to create awareness about drug abuse by young people. “We aim to create awareness on the danger and consequences like suicide, rape, stealing, fighting, as well as school dropouts, abandoning careers and teenage pregnancies in addition to other dangers of drugs usage,” Shikerete said.
Since there is no rehabilitation facility in Kavango East, the founder said he will through this project educate the youth on the physical features and the types of drugs that will eventually lead them to a drug-free life.
“We will also educate and discuss strategies and techniques on how to avoid the use and overcome addictions,” adding that “Namibia Hand of Hope is a community project to benefit every Namibian directly or indirectly; support is needed from everyone. We invite all different stakeholders to support this project. Your support will be highly appreciated. This project is of great value to our community and the nation at large.”
According to the founder, they are grateful that the governor for Kavango East region, Samuel Mbambo, has given his blessings to this project, and that is a motivation for them.
“We would like to reach as many young people who are at schools, universities through visits, community meetings, workshops, public talks and group discussions. We are also available for any community events. We can be invited to share our experience based on our project aims to reach out to people in need,” Shikerete said.