June is dedicated to awareness-raising on drug abuse and illicit trafficking
15 June 2012 - Every year, an estimated 210 million people use illicit drugs; of that number, almost 200.000 die as a consequence. Drug use and drug trafficking threaten health, global stability, and socio-economic development across the world.
To raise awareness about the issue, every year, 26 June is celebrated as the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking - two serious problems for society as a whole and for youth in particular.
In this context, in Brazil, UNODC has prepared a series of activities to be held in June, within the framework of the program Youth of Expression ( Jovem de Expressão in Portuguese), an initiative of the Group Caixa Seguros (Brazilian private company), in partnership with the NGOs CUFA-DF and Cultural Group Azulim, UNODC and UNESCO. The activities aim at providing information and fostering the debate about drugs and the risks associated to their use from a youth culture perspective.
Activities begin on 22 June with the screening of the movie Paraísos Artificiais (Artificial Paradises) - produced by Zazen Produções and disseminated in Brazilian theaters last month. The screening will be held in the Espaço Renato Russo, 508 Sul, in Brasília, at 3pm. Issues depicted in the movie, such as the use of synthetic drugs on rave parties, and international drug trafficking will be discussed with representatives of civil society organizations from Bahia, Ceará, and São Paulo, working in the context of synthetic drugs use. Youth culture will also be a theme with the participation of DJ Oblongui, who will talk about the electronic music scene in Brasília. After the debate, youngsters from the Youth of Expression program will make presentations of break dance and graffiti.
On 26 June, UNODC´s regional representative, Bo Mathiasen, will launch in a press conference the World Drug Report 2012 about global trends in drug use and trafficking.
Activities end on Saturday, 30 June, in a "2 in 1" event in Ceilândia Norte (a satellite city of Brasília). The Cultural Saturday ( Sabadão Cultural, in Portuguese) - a regular event organized in Ceilândia - and the Youth Action (Ação Jovem in Portuguese) in celebration of the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking - will hold workshops and cultural presentations including sports and arts as healthy alternatives for youth to enjoy free time. Activities also include debates on drugs, sexually transmitted diseases, and health.
The Youth of Expression program aims at offering opportunities and empowering local youth thorough activities including health, education, entrepreneurship, and art, contributing to the improvement of life conditions in their communities, reducing their exposition to crime, violence, and the use of drugs.
World Drug Campaign
Globally, UNODC leads the campaign " Global Action - Healthy Communities without Drugs" to raise awareness about the challenge illicit drugs represent. The goal of the campaign is to mobilize, support and inspire people to act against drug use. The campaign fosters healthy attitudes in communities as an efficient method for drug abuse prevention. As part of this effort, a series of educational materials on different types of drugs, their effects and risks, as well as information for adolescents, parents and teachers is available in different languages.