GIVING THE TRUTH ABOUT DRUGS TO ITALY’S YOUNGER GENERATION
A study published in November 2021 in The Lancet found, “In the past decade, cannabis use, treatment rates and potency levels have increased in Europe, highlighting major concerns about the public health impact of cannabis use.”
In Italy, according to the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction, one young adult out of five consumed cannabis in 2019. That means over 2 million youth.
Foundation for a Drug-Free World Italy is not willing to let drug abuse go unchecked. Volunteers are bringing the Truth About Drugs materials to their communities. They particularly want to reach Italy’s younger generation.
Since the beginning of this year, volunteers have been delivering drug prevention seminars in schools, in some cases accompanied by local police officers and officials.
“Family, school—they have to convey this message about the harmful effect of using narcotics,” said a police official after one of the Foundation’s drug prevention lectures. “Obviously then institutions like ours approach kids to further make them understand exactly why we need to stay away from drugs. They are bad and using them, or dealing with them, or trafficking them is an illegal activity that must not only be controlled but also prevented.”
Drug-Free World volunteers hit home with their message. And students respond. “Most of the time, people ‘take refuge’ in these drugs to vent or protect themselves,” said one student. “They should protect themselves instead of destroying themselves,” said another.
At elementary schools, children drew pictures to thank the volunteers for coming and sharing this information. The children were grateful for what they learned and can now make informed decisions about drugs and their future.