Do more to curb drug problem among youth
THE EDITOR, Sir:
With reference to the letter from the RISE Life Management Services dated Thursday, May 3, I would like to add some comments and recommendations.
From observation and first-hand knowledge of social challenges in the parish of St Thomas and the Jamaican society at large, it is clear that there is a huge drug problem among our youth.
Guidance counsellors, teachers and others have, over the years, initiated and executed many programmes to help fix this problem. Persons have been invited to visit schools and talk to the students, to help turn young people away from the use of drugs, especially marijuana. We have succeeded to some extent, but there is still room for improvement.
I am proposing that assistance be given to each and every high school to tackle this problem. We could start a programme which could run from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m daily. We could use three hours and run it for maybe two days per week - one hour geared towards academics, and two hours, for instruction and demonstration on social issues pertaining to drug abuse.
I suggest also that we could conduct Parent-Teachers' Association meetings in some communities to sensitise parents and students about the adverse effects of using drugs. Presently we are targeting some communities in St Thomas for this venture.
In order to have an effective programme, suitable persons would volunteer to assist in this area. These facilitators would be trained by agencies like RISE.
I am, therefore, appealing to the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Youth and Culture, and other businesses, to assist in saving our youth. There are people who are willing to help, if given the necessary tools.