Ministry launches ‘I choose life’ campaign, supports Youth against substance abuse

The Federal Ministry of Youths and Sports is set to launch its “I choose life campaign” to address the mental and emotional pressures that could push youth into substance abuse during the lockdown put in place to arrest the spread of COVID-19.

Deeply concerned about the effects of the social distancing  measures for the prevention of the spread of COVID-19   and  the possible consequential economic  hardships  that may follow on the mental, emotional and physical wellbeing of Nigerians ,  the Ministry is launching  the campaign to support young people  in making healthy lifestyle choices by avoiding abuse of drugs and illegal substances.

 According to the Minister, Mr Sunday Dare,

 “The past few weeks have been extremely disruptive for most of us. We have all taken a hit in one way or the other. Our traditional lifestyle is predominantly community oriented.  Youth are at the stage of their lives where schooling, socializing, entertainment, sports and relaxation form daily routine are the core of the expression of our youthfulness.  

“In the past few weeks and in the next few months it seems that routine is being   defined not by our own choice but by the realities of a pandemic that is ravaging the world until a solution is found. I have spoken to many young people and feel their pain and the toll it is taking on their mental wellness.  For many, there is boredom, a sense of anxiety, hopelessness and uncertainty for the future. The usual outlets to let off stress and steam have been disrupted and it gives a sense of gloom. I am quite concerned about the effect on the mental, physical and emotional well-being of our young people at this time. 

The Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports is partnering other organizations to ensure that the media programmes complement other community and school-based anti-drug programs, when consistent messages are conveyed through a variety of channels and in several different contexts.

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