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Tafileh Town Unites Against Drugs

Published 07/21/2017 by Global Communities

Tafileh Town Unites Against Drugs
Citizens Commit to Combatting Drugs Together
An HTM community member signs a commitment at a public ceremony.

Hid, Tein, and Mansoura (HTM), a community of 6,000 in Tafileh, identified drugs and negative youth behaviors associated with a lack of avenues for positive engagement as a key threat facing the community. For Ruqaya Badareen, a member of the HTM Community Enhancement Team (CET), the threat hit a little too close to home. “My son came home shocked one day. A man had offered him drugs, saying they’d make him feel good. My son understands the danger, so he refused, but drugs almost entered my home” Ruqaya said.

The CET, comprised of male and female community volunteers both youth and adult, designed a project to tackle these issues. They realized that a comprehensive approach mobilizing virtually the entire community would be necessary to take on this challenge. They engaged stakeholders from the education, security, and health sectors, as well as tribal and religious leaders. They implemented a total of 37 activities engaging over 2,400 community members through awareness sessions, dialogues, and a football tournament. “The CET played an important role in helping us implement a large number of awareness raising sessions within the community,” stated Sheriff Mithqal Saleem Habashneh, head of the Public Relations Department of the Tafileh Security Directorate. “We also noticed an increase in community cooperation, especially from the youth, and received an increased number of requests from other organizations for collaboration.”

The project culminated in the first-ever dialogue session on the dangers of drugs held in HTM, and public commitment letters signed by stakeholders and community members to reinforce the behavior changes and continued collaboration. “Fighting drugs is a public issue. We are all partners and the responsibility falls on everyone,” said media representative Khalid Qatatsheh.

Perceptions of safety and security in the HTM have increased by 4.5 percentage points, while social wellbeing has increased 7.7 points.