The opening of the Center for Drug Education and Counseling (CEDEC) at the Oak Brook Building completes the comprehensive program to address the drug problem in Bohol.
Said Gov. Edgar Chatto, as he remains optimistic that this is a major step towards the vision of a drug-free and peaceful Bohol.
The governor led provincial officials, also joined by DOH Asst. Reg. Dir. Sofia Mancao and the Bohol Island Lions Club represented by George Lim at the ribbon cutting rites of CEDEC at the Oak Brook Building on Wednesday, October 12.
Chatto and Lim also signed the MOA on the use of the Lions Club Oak Brook Building as the center.
The signing was witnessed by DOH Asst. Reg. Dir. Sofia Mancao, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Reymoses Cabagnot, Provincial Social Welfare and Development Officer Carmelita Tecson, 302nd Infantry Brigade Commander Col. Arnulfo Matanguihan, Police Provincial Director PS/Supt. Felipe Natividad, Board Member Jade Acapulco Bautista, CEDEC head Dr. Yul Lopez, Provincial Administrator Alfonso Damalerio II, and Board Member Victor Balite.
Chatto said the Provincial Government, as in all its undertakings, is anchoring programs, in this case – drug abuse and criminality, in partnership with various sectors, in recognition that the drug issue is not only a police concern but also a health concern.
Incidentally, the governor shared, the Provincial Anti Drug Abuse Council (PADAC) was created back in 1997 when he was then chairperson of the Kabataang Barangay, earlier than the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG)-issued memorandum for its creation in 1999. This provided for the establishment of the center in Bohol which was later on included in the Bohol Administrative Code.
Collaborative work at the center will involve the support of the Department of Health, with Dr. Cesar Tomas Lopez as head along with the Provincial Health Office, the Office of the Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office and a team composed of a psychiatrist, psychologist, social welfare officers, nurses, and even a police officer from the Bohol Provincial Police Office. As part of their socio civic activities, the Lions Club will also be organizing drug information symposia and fora.
The establishment of the center came about in recognition of need for facilities to take care of over 30,000 surrenderees in the province under the Oplan Tokhang of the PNP.
While national government will be constructing drug rehabilitation centers, and the Provincial Government itself is in the process of establishing a rehabilitation center in the island municipality of Carlos P. Garcia, there are those in the low risk and medium risk categories of drug affectation that needed to be considered.
Among interventions to be made available in the center include determination of affectation and appropriate intervention such as sports, livelihood, and spiritual inputs, as well as assistance to achieve genuine family bonding, or referral for rehabilitation, if need be.
The CEDEC will be model for centers to be established across municipalities which task will also be to assess drug affectation and to determine intervention, a 7-member team from each town for which will be trained under DOH.
The Technical Working Group of the Provincial Government met a couple of months back with a three-member team from the prestigious New Day Recovery Center on a proposed â€œA Community-Based Drug Demand Reduction Program & Recovery Support System for the Province Of Bohol and its Municipalities.â€
Dr. Miriam Peguet-Cue, of both the NDRC and the Professional Regulatory Commission; Jay Valderrama, NDRC program director; and Katrina Pantaleon, psychologist, were consulted for the training of trainors in implementing the community-based approach and in providing advice for the operations of the center that will be integrated into the comprehensive anti-illegal drug campaign.
ALSA DROGA, MASA MASID
Meanwhile, the national and regional campaigns against illegal drugs continue with launching of Alsa Droga (Alyansa Laban sa Droga) and Masa Masid (Mamamayang Ayaw sa Anomalya Mamamayang Ayaw sa Iligal na Droga) in Inabanga on Tuesday, October 11.
“Be responsible for your family members and your neighbors. Do not wait until the hands of the law are brought down on them,” Chatto said to over 2000 community leaders (church, schools, barangays) participated in the launch of the regional campaign Alsa Droga and the national campaign Masa Masid in Inabanga led by Mayor Roygie Jumamoy.
He added that no development and no future awaits when generations are affected by use of illegal drugs and that is why Alsa Droga is an important initiative as efforts to unite against drug addiction and to ensure that people stay away from illegal drugs are intensified.
Alsa Droga, a brainchild of PNP Regional Director Noel TaliÃ±o, mobilizes community volunteers to be vigilant by reporting all activities related to proliferation of illegal drugs within their respective barangays.
Masa Masid, on the other hand, of the DILG is a barangay-based anti-criminality, anti-corruption, and anti-illegal drugs program which encourages multi-sectoral partnership to intensify the spirit of volunteerism at the community level.
Also present at the launch were Bohol Provincial Police Director PS/Supt. Felipe Natividad, PDEA-7 chief of plans and operations Agent Melvin Estoque, 302nd Infantry Brigade Commander Col. Arnulfo Matanguihan, DILG Provincial Director Ma. Louisella Lucino, Cong. Aris Aumentado represented by Donglee Camacho, deputy brigade commander Major Noel Baluyan, and Major Rene Berneza.
Inabanga also awarded school projects to winners of school-based anti illegal drugs drive to St. Paul’s Academy and Inabanga High School. (Leah/EDCOM)