Activities dedicated to the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking in Georgia Red Cross

During the week from 26 June to 3 July, 2022 GRCS organized and participated in the events dedicated to the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.

Aim of the GRCS activities was on one hand to raise awareness of the GRCS staff and volunteers on Harm Reduction principles, importance of decriminalization, changing the violent system and harm reduction policies and on the other hand to advocate for support instead of punishment of substance abuse people.

During the week GRCS staff members carried out informational sessions/seminars/trainings for volunteers of 19 GRCS branches. Topics of the sessions/seminars/trainings were the principles of Harm Reduction, existing situation in the country (policies, laws, and regulations), health, public health, psychosocial and economic challenges related to use of drugs, first aid in case of overdose until professional medical assistance is available. In addition to the theoretical educational work, the volunteers had opportunity to practice their knowledge and FA skills during the simulation exercise organized with the ICRC and IFRC support in Gori, Shida Kartli Region of Georgia. According to the scenario of the simulation, the trained volunteers had to cope with the emergency related to the overdose.

As one of the key stakeholders in the country and a member of the Georgian Harm Reduction Network, the Georgia Red Cross representatives were involved in the different activities organized by the partners.

  • On 26 June 2022 a focus group for women was organized by GeNPUD and supported by the NGO “New Vector”.
    During the meeting, the needs and barriers existing in the country were discussed and the focus group participants filled in a specially prepared questionnaire.
    GRCS representatives were invited to attend the meeting and observe the working process.
  • On June 26, 2022 Georgia joined the celebration of the International Day, and at 11:00 am representatives of the GeNPUD gathered on the territory of the Rustaveli Metro station. As part of the “Support. don’t punish” campaign, meeting with the public was organized and various information materials were distributed. GRCS volunteers were involved in the distribution of informational-educational materials provided by the GeNPUD.
  • On June 27, 2022 Round Table meeting was organized by the GeHRN, where negative outcomes of the existing drug policy and “Humane drug policy-accessible health care” were discussed. During the meeting a dialogue between the governmental structures, the non-governmental sector, the professional community and the representatives of the drug users’ community about the problems in the drug policy and health care, ways for solving and future cooperation took place.

More than 300 GRCS staff and volunteers at the central and branch levels were involved in the activities dedicated to the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.

GRCS was thanked by the partners for usual active participation in HR activities and advocacy work carried out at country level.


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