In a bid to galvernize efforts from different quarters of the world for the work of eradicating the use of illicit drugs, the United Nations General Assembly on 7 December 1987, decided to observe 26 June as the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.
This was to serve as an expression of its determination to strengthen action and cooperation to achieve the goal of an international society free of drug abuse.
This global initiative, observed every year, is supported by communities and various organizations all over the world to fight against the use, spread and trafficking of illicit drugs. It also aims to increase awareness of the gigantic problem that illicit drugs represent to society.
The theme for this year, 2018 is: ‘Listen First – Listening to children and youth is the first step to help them grow healthy and safe’. Any initiative to fight against the use of illicit drugs will have to involve the young – the future of the world.
This year’s theme is therefore very apt as in order to succeed in fighting against illicit drugs, one has to keep the children in view. Investing in their wellbeing is one of the most effective ways to keep them away from drugs.
The fight requires a multidimensional approach for it to have a meaningful impact on the lives of the people of the world, particularly the youth. There have to be efforts to stem drug trafficking; measures to engage the young so they don’t turn to drugs; laws to prevent its spread and use, and attitudinal change. All these aspects are important in this struggle.