3-in-1 conference on substance abuse

THE 26th International Federation of Non-Government Organisations for the Prevention of Drug Substance Abuse (IFNGO) World Conference this year will be based on the theme “Healthy Wholesome Communities-No Drugs”.

The conference from Nov 15 to 18 will see the participation of 200 Malaysian and 100 overseas members from 20 countries.

Conference secretary Hamzah Sidang Mohamad said the conference was unique as it encompassed the concept of three-in-one.

“Running concurrently with the main conference will be the 22nd IFNGO Asean NGOs Workshop and the Youth Conference in Malacca. For the youth conference, 200 are expected to participate. For the workshop, four representatives from each Asean country have been invited. Participants of the three conference will meet for a joint session on the last day,” he said.

IFNGO organises conferences to further the understanding of and to resolve the problems of drugs and substance abuse.

It was launched in 1981 under the Kuala Lumpur Declaration in Malaysia which was the Third International Conference of NGOs on Drug Abuse Prevention which was launched by the then prime minister, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

IFNGO had since developed collaborative interactions among NGOs regionally and internationally to identify the needs of services and implement diversified programmes to prevent and control drug abuse with the ultimate aim to achieve a drug-free society in countries around the world. There are 42-member countries under IFNGO.

This upcoming world conference will call upon all members and respective countries to demonstrate determination and commitment to attain health and wholesome communities.

The conference provides a venue for the exchange and sharing of information, ideas, innovative modalities for prevention of drugs and substance abuse.

This is where recommendations are formulated to ensure continuity and sustainability of prevention programmes and modalities.

Among other objectives, it also stresses the importance of religion and family in helping youths to pursue happy, healthy and drug-free lifestyles.

There will be eight plenary sessions and two workshops in this three-day conference.

Plenary sessions will cover topics like the global drug abuse crisis, children’s rights against drugs and substance, empowering family and community. It would also talk about the role of youths, Government and private sector’s involvement to achieve a drug-free community.

The international conference will be opened by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak at Everly Hotel in Putrajaya while former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad will deliver the keynote address.

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