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Centre needs help to assist addicts

   02 March 2018   l   Andries van der Heyde    l   Views: 88   l   22 days ago  


Volunteers at the Ikageng Youth Centre along the R101 road to Modimolle outside of Bela-Bela believe that they can help addicts turn away from drugs. The volunteers, however, need assistance. On the photo are the volunteers on the day The Post visited the centre.

According to the police, Bela-Bela has the highest rate of drug abuse and arrests in the entire Waterberg area.

 Although private persons and especially churches give their time to assist drug addicts that want to rehabilitate, there remains a need for a proper rehabilitation facility in town. 

A group of caring individuals have tried to make this happen outside town since 2013.

EFF councillor Andries Sello Moswoeu took The Post to plot number 32 in Buyskop on the R101 where a number of addicts have been staying, receiving treatment and food, all at the caretakers’ own cost. 

The Ikageng Youth Centre currently has 10 recovering addicts that has made the facility’s walls home, but the place is in disarray. 

Jonas Morerwa, chairperson of the facility, accompanied by a large group, said that the facility is a registered non-governmental organisation and is primarily a skills development centre where addicts can rehabilitate. The property belongs to a local communal property association.

On asking where they get their medication from, the group said they pay for the addicts out of their own pockets.

Behind the facility lies a few tunnels where various vegetables are cultivated. 

Morerwa said in the pursuit of becoming a self-sustainable facility, the addicts are tasked to take care of growing the produce so that they can find a sense of self-worth again along with doing daily tasks.

The larger group act as caretakers and holds addicts accountable for their deeds in case they relapse. Sessions are held weekly to change the addicts’ way of thinking, but also to expose their talents, said Morerwa.

Daniel Moerane, one of the recovering addicts, told The Post that he considers himself an “ex-prisoner” since he came to the facility.

“I benefit from this place by receiving my medication. I am experiencing a change in mind-set and I get a whole lot of love from these people,” said Moerane. “I forget about drugs when I am here and this is one place where our guardians actually care.”

The facility, however, has a long list of needs. The property has a borehole but no pump, only two toilets out of seven are in working order, there is a need for food and medication, and there is no proper bedding. The place is also not considered safe due to a lack of security and most of the time there is no electricity, there is no office for data capturing and a lack of proper farming and maintenance equipment.

It is also a concern that the crèche that is run from the property, should be fenced off from the facility.

The group insists that if there are addicts in Bela-Bela who are struggling, the Ikageng Youth Centre will be able to help them. They want to help addicts become free from the scourge of drugs.

Moswoeu said that he has already had talks with the Bela-Bela business chamber to assist the centre.

“This can become a good establishment that can benefit the immediate community. I ask that the relevant department, as well as private institutions assist these people,” said Moswoeu. “People must be empowered so that they can survive.”

According to Morerwa three previous addicts have completely turned away from drugs since they stayed there.

People who want to provide assistance can phone Morerwa at tel. 072 496 4047 or email him at mjmorerwa5@gmail.com(.)

He encourages people to visit the blue palisade fence property along the R101 road.




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