Flawed messaging by drug traffickers endangering our youth
ISLAMABAD, AUG 30: /DNA/ – The Karim Khan Afridi Welfare Foundation (KKAWF) launched four short videos on ‘Solutions to Drug Problem – From Youth to Youth’ at the Pak-Brunei Friendship Hall, Ministry of Foreign Affair, Islamabad.
The scripts of these videos were written by students from 17 schools of Islamabad and Rawalpindi as part of a script writing competition supported by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Drug Abuse Prevention Centre (DAPC – Japan).
Speaking at the occasion, Mr. Jeremy Milsom, Country Representative of the UNODC Pakistan said “it is very important to understand how dangerous the use drugs is, and false messages and glamourization by the drug traffickers must be stopped. The diversification of synthetic drugs is intensifying the alarming situation of the rise of drug use specially as there are now 1100 different variety of narcotics substances including in Pakistan”. He lauded the production of the videos adding that such initiative should be disseminated in the schools and communities.
Senator Sana Jamali, Convenor of Education Parliamentarians’ Caucus in the Senate of Pakistan said that the videos are amazing and they show the ground realities of what Pakistani youth is facing. Only a collective effort can lead us to a drug free future. She said that these videos should be played in all the Embassies in Islamabad and also promised to that she will talk to the Chairman Senate to request him to play these videos in the Parliament for the Parliamentarians and their families. Further she said that the time is now to ensure a better future for our youth as they constitute 64% of the population – close to 155 million under 30 in Pakistan.
The Chairperson KKAWF, Mrs. Cristina von Sperling Afridi, in her welcome remarks highlighted the importance of early drug prevention which was very well brought out under the project, ‘Empowering Youth with Better Knowledge on Evidence-Based Substance-Use Prevention Strategies’ and mentioned that this is the first time that the youth themselves addressed the issue of substance abuse, proposing solutions that are as innovative as they are screened today.
These videos will be disseminated on UNODC (Vienna) online, educational institutions across Pakistan, among communities and through social media networks. The First Prize of Rs. 50,000 went to the winning script titled ‘Symbolism’ written by Abdul Rafay, Alizeh Naeem, Zara Saad, Akbar Khan, students of the Beaconhouse Margalla Campus (BMI).
The three Runner Ups included Ms. Manaim Mujeeb Khan (IMCG F-6/2), Omar Adnan, Rafia Ali, Abdullah bin Naseem, Dawood Safdar (BMI).
The video films were produced in collaboration with Bling Motion Pictures, Mastaanay Productions and Iqra University Islamabad Department of Media Studies.
Others who attended the event were Mrs. Rita Brunn Akhtar (Head of United States Educational Foundations in Pakistan), Mr. Hassan Jawad Rana (Head of Media Studies of Iqra University), Board Members of KKAWF, Heads of schools, Principals, students of the participating schools and volunteers of KKAWF.