MANILA-- The government wants to transform former drug dependents, especially the youth, into "productive community leaders", Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Judy Taguiwalo has said.
"Mahalagang matulungan sila sa pagsisikap na mabura ang stigma sa mga tumalikod na sa droga (It is important that they get help in removing the stigma associated with drug addiction)," Taguiwalo said during the public forum dubbed as "Rehabinasyon", held at the Event Center of the Quezon Memorial Shrine in Quezon City on Wednesday.
The forum was attended by representatives of various government agencies that have the common goal of ensuring the elimination of the country's drug problem using the full extent of the law while putting a premium on the rehabilitation of drug surrenderers.? ?
Taguiwalo said her department has adopted the Yakap Bayan or Embrace the People program to help turn drug dependents into productive members of society through medical and psychosocial interventions, such as detoxification and counseling, in the first six months of their rehabilitation.
"Within this period, we will teach them to do community service," the social welfare chief said.
The next 18 months, she said, will be the "re-integration phase, during which the recovering drug dependents will be given livelihood training and will be introduced to capacity-building activities, including training on disaster response, as part of their involvement in community service.
Taguiwalo said the ultimate goal is to turn the former drug dependents into leaders who could themselves be at the front line during disasters and train others on disaster management.
She expressed hope that the former drug dependents could join the campaign against drugs by encouraging other drug dependents to start a new chapter in their lives.
Source: Philippines News Agency