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Big walk against substance abuse

SAPS, the youth and various NGOs collaborated to bring awareness to substance abuse.

Police and the community recently stood side by side in Kagiso against substance abuse.

According to West Rand District Police spokesperson Captain Solomon Sibiya, the aim was to support one of their close social partners, Westview Clinic, who organised a 5km walk to raise awareness about the devastating and negative impact alcohol or drug addiction has on users, their family and West Rand community.

The walk, which started at the clinic near the Kagiso Police Station with a convoy of law enforcement and health partners, was also well supported by members of the community including the youth. Other stakeholders supporting the event included the Gauteng Department of Health, emergency medical services (EMS), Mogale City traffic, the Elinye Ithuba NGO, and crime wardens.

“The objective of the walk was mainly to encourage anyone who was suffering from addiction to go to the clinic for help. In general, the common message was that addiction can be beaten with rehabilitation centres indicating that rejection by members of society is often a contributing factor to why addicts never fully recover,” Sibiya said.

He further described the event as an eye-opener and informative.

Furthermore, Westview Clinic provided many of the attendees with some insight on how to deal with drugs and overcome their addiction.

The NGO provides various programmes such as drug rehabilitation, sexual abuse education, and whistleblowing.

Westview Clinic started out in 1970 in a caravan in Horizon, Roodepoort, handing out information pamphlets to the public and offering out-patient care. Increasing demand for alcohol and drug rehabilitation in general and for in-patient facilities in particular necessitated the move and the best available building was a converted police station in the Roodepoort CBD.

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