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Seeking creative ways for fighting drug addiction
Published in The Egyptian Gazette on 31 - 07 - 2018

Cairo, July 31, 2018 -- THE Minister of Social Solidarity, Ghada Wali, told a press conference on Tuesday that drug addiction must be tackled through creative means, such as using the power of art and media in raising social awareness of the problem.
The conference was held to announce the second season of the Arab Short Films Competition for combating drug addiction. The competition also encourages Arab writers to produce short videos with a clear message on the problem of addiction.
The competition is launched in co-operation with the Fund for Drug Control and Treatment of Addiction (FDCTA) and Mentor Arabia, an NGO for youth empowerment.
According to recent studies, the content of media and art are basic sources of information for youth on addiction.
The Minister said that 38 awareness campaigns had been launched since January 2017 to raise awareness of drug addiction.The campaigns targeted rural areas.
A campaign named, '' You are Stronger than Drugs,'' was also launched with the participation of a number of artists and the famous football player, Mohammed Salah.
It caused a 400 per cent rise in calls to the rehabilitation hotline 16023. The Manager of Mentor Arabia, Thorya Ismail, said that Mentor Arabia was very appreciative of its co-operation with the Ministry of Social Solidarity.
She said that the institution was keen on taking part in eliminating drug addiction. It was, she said, a matter of one dollar allocated for raising awareness among the youth versus 18 dollars paid out on drug treatment.
Government bodies in all the Arab countries, she said, had become open to finding solutions for the problem and this encouraged NGOs to co-operate in fighting drug addiction.

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