UNODC delivers awareness-raising materials and equipment to Mental Health support networks in Senegal during COVID 19


DAKAR  The International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, also known as 'World Drug Day', is celebrated annually on 26 June. The theme of World Drug Day 2020 is "Better Knowledge for Better Care."  Supported annually by the international community, the Day also aims to raise awareness of the dangers of using and trafficking illegal drugs for our society.

To mark the occasion the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) for West and Central Africa donated awareness-raising materials and personal protective equipment (PPE) to combat the ongoing COVID-19 health crisis, to the Network of Organisations for the Promotion of Mental Health in Senegal (REPOSAMS).

Ms. Mame Seyni Dieye of the UNODC Regional Office for West and Central Africa presents masks to Dr. Jean Augustin Tine, Head of the Mental Health Division of the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs

The ceremony took place at the 'Jacques Chirac Drug Awareness and Information Centre'  in Thiaroye. The Centre offers a wide range of services to drug users, but also organizes activities to engage with the community and support drug users.

Through the Mental Health Division of the Ministry of Health, the following prevention and awareness materials amounting to  5,720,000 FCFA were distributed:

  • Hygiene products: bottles of hydro-alcoholic gel, masks, gloves, liquid detergents, bleach, soap and handwashing units
  • 100 awareness/prevention posters
  • 100 awareness/prevention t-shirts

On this occasion, Ms Seyni Dieye, in charge of the UNODC drug demand reduction programme in Senegal, said that through this handover of equipment, UNODC reiterates its commitment to the Government with institutional support that will enable it to contribute effectively to the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

"For an effective fight against drugs, we need to go beyond politics and integrate the community activities that are essential to the population. The work of community actors is crucial because their presence and their interventions help to reach people who are marginalized or who do not trust the system in place. It is therefore imperative to ensure continuity of care and psycho-social support for people suffering from disorders related to the use of drugs during the COVID19 pandemic," she said.

"We hope that this modest grant from UNODC will help to facilitate better support for community players for the benefit of the most vulnerable people. vulnerable people and drug users in particular, during these times of stress and strain, and of global uncertainty. »

 Ms Dieye from
UNODCinspects the handwashing stations

UNODC support aims to contribute to better care of drug users during this pandemic.

Dr. Jean Augustin Tine, Head of the Mental Health Division of the Ministry of Health and Social Action announced: "In order to effectively combat drug use, the Ministry of Health attaches the utmost importance to strengthening the activities of the Ministry of Health and Social Action in the fight against drug use.  We, therefore, welcome this initiative to provide hygiene, protection and communication products to members of the Network of Organizations for the Promotion of Mental Health in Senegal (REPOSAMS). This act will make it possible to relaunch promotion and prevention activities against drug use in this context of COVID-19. We thank UNODC for the actions carried out for the benefit of the Senegalese population, through the Ministry of Health."

For more information:

 The World Drug report: West Africa trends