SENSITIZATION ON DRUG ABUSE
Savannah Institute for Sustainable Development (SISDev), a prominent non-profit organization dedicated to community development, recently organized a drug abuse sensitization programme at Government Comprehensive Day Secondary School in Bauchi. The event, which took place on May 10, 2023, was aimed to sensitize students about the dangers and consequences of drug abuse. The insightful lecture was delivered by a representative from the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Mr.Reuel Tifiti.
The programme commenced with the registration of students and teachers, followed by an individual opening prayer to set a contemplative atmosphere. Professor Abdulqadir Ibrahim, Chairman of SISDev, then delivered the opening remarks, extending a warm welcome to all attendees and providing a brief overview of SISDev's mission. Prof. Ibrahim also shed light on the critical issue of drug abuse, emphasizing the need for awareness and preventive measures.
To gauge the students' existing knowledge and awareness of drug abuse, a pre-test performance evaluation form was administered and collected after completion. Mr. Mustapha Muhammed Adamu, a volunteer of SISDev, facilitated the introduction segment and provided a concise history of the organization's work.
Next, Reuel Tifiti, the esteemed Guest Speaker from NDLEA, took the stage to deliver a captivating lecture titled "Make Health Your Priority, Not Drugs." Tifiti comprehensively covered various aspects of drug abuse, including its definition, commonly abused substances in Nigeria and Bauchi State in particular, such as Tobacco, Meth, and Raphenol and their consequences. The lecture highlighted the detrimental effects of drug abuse on the brain, liver, and overall health, as well as its association with high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, AIDS, and Hepatitis.
Tifiti emphasized the pivotal role that educational institutions play in combating drug abuse. He recommended the implementation of clear rules, strict enforcement, enhanced security measures, and regular preventive education within schools. A question-and-answer session followed the lecture, where students and teachers actively engaged with the speaker, seeking clarification on self-medication, advice for drug abusers, the perceived advantages of drug abuse, and NDLEA's research on socially acceptable drugs and herbs like moringa. Tifiti expertly answered each question, providing well-explained responses to enrich the audience's understanding.
Mrs. Titi Yakubu, the Executive Director of SISDev, then addressed the students, offering encouragement and valuable advice. Mrs. Yakubu emphasized the importance of abstaining from drug abuse, highlighting its adverse effects and cautioning against negative influences. Mr. Mark Tumba, another volunteer of SISDev, reinforced the message by emphasizing the negative aspects of drug abuse from religious, social, and moral perspectives. He urged the students to envision a safer and better society, effectively reactivating the drug-free club and outlining its advantages. Sixty-nine enthusiastic students eagerly volunteered to join the club, and their names were recorded. Additionally, seven teachers offered their support to the club and volunteered to assist the students in their endeavors.
Following the lectures, a post-test performance evaluation was conducted to assess the impact of the program. Subsequently, a counseling session led by the NDLEA personnel was held, with twenty students actively participating. In a separate hall, a short video highlighting the dangers of drug abuse was shown, enhancing visual learning and reinforcing the lecture's key messages.
The event culminated with a vote of thanks from the School's Principal, expressing sincere gratitude to SISDev for organizing the informative lecture. The Principal reiterated the importance of avoiding drug abuse and the school's commitment to maintaining a safe and drug-free environment. The programme concluded with an individual closing prayer led by Munira Dalha Umar, the Desk Officer of SISDev.