Citizen’s campaigns are an organized course of action to achieve a goal that is beneficial at individual, family, community and national levels. Citizen’s campaign can take social, economic and political form or all at once. Successful social and economic campaigns have political significance. Effective citizen’s participation in the production process helps in improving social and economic welfare of families and communities. Overcoming poverty and unemployment challenges has pivotal role in mobilizing citizens in achieving modern aspirations of the global community-achieving sustainable development goals by the year 2030.

To be specific: citizens campaign against deliquesce and addictions are consequential in preventing the cyclical nature of addictions. Good morals are rooted in families or communities as well as the bad ones. Good or bad morals impact in families and communities and this can go on for generations. It requires the involvement of the citizenry to strengthen the growth of acceptable morals or values that benefit the entire nation. If it’s a bad moral, it affects the entire nation and generations. If this is the case, is it necessary to call for a citizens’ campaign?

Addiction to (drugs, alcohol or substances, sex or behavior) is a sickness just like Malaria, Polio, Covid-19, and Measles among others. Addiction kills. Studies indicate that addiction health related issues include lung or heart disease, stroke, cancer and mental conditions. Addictions and HIV/AIDS are intertwined epidemics. HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C are linked to sex addictions

Addictions to alcohol, drugs, sex and others with their related effects on health, family and community security, suicide, mental issues, pre-mature death, unwanted or teenage pregnancies with all its consequences, poverty, and social isolation among others can be defeated in Rwanda. As citizens, our resolve to overcome our own challenges with our own solutions has gained remarkable place in Rwanda’s history.

Purpose Rwanda’s noble call to involve every citizen in fighting addictions is to ensure together we restore and turn into Purposeful Agents of Transformation 5000+ addiction patients (comprising 1,000 sex addiction patients, 2,000 alcoholics and 2,000 drug addicts) by the end of 2022.  Purposeful Agents of Transformation are instrumental in achieving self sustainability and socio-economic transformation in Rwanda: creation of jobs, increasing production levels, increasing Gross Domestic Product, fighting poverty, expanding export levels, increasing market for local production, improved welfare among others.

Purpose Rwanda’s launch of citizens’ campaign deliquesces and addictions on 17th December, 2021 have some core objectives:

  1. To create an awareness of the addictions rate in Rwanda and an alternative approach to preventing and managing them.
  2. To lay the ground for the citizens to participate in the prevention and management of addictions. Together as a nation, much can be achieved.

There are various highlights from various speakers that are worth mentioning:

Aisha one of the beneficiaries thanked Purpose Rwanda for becoming her parents at a time when she had no one to speak to, to listen to, to get any help from, and to advise her. “Mr. Joseph Macumu (Addiction Prevention Strategist of Purpose Rwanda) I thank you for being too special to me emotionally, spiritually and physically”, she exclaimed.

Aisha one of Purpose Rwanda Beneficiaries shared her testimony

Judith Katabarwa the Chairperson of Board of Directors of Purpose Rwanda said, everyone was born with a purpose and talent on this earth. The development of a country is built on our gifts and talents, we need to put them into action and strongly fight addictions. Together we can help that family member, a friend, a neighbour or any other person that is diverting from his/her life purpose because of addictions. 

Judith K. Katabarwa Purpose Rwanda Board chairperson called for everyone to join in this campaign.

Bruno Agaba the Legal Representative of Purpose Rwanda expounded on the road map of the organization for the next five years (2022-2027). Putting it more starkly:  Purpose Rwanda’s effort together with the citizens of Rwanda and other partners will ultimately go a long way in supporting the recovery of delinquent and addiction patients, training them, mentoring them, integrating them in the communities as Purposeful Agents of Transformation, therefore, making their contribution in poverty eradication and participation in achieving self-sustainability and socio-economic transformation in Rwanda as a pivotal cornerstone to progress.

Christian Giles who represented the Director General of National Rehabilitation Service called upon everyone to join hands with NRS and Purpose Rwanda in this campaign, support districts in fighting delinquency through equipping the recovered youth with necessary skills to deal with challenges they face in life,  ensuring follow up of graduates and providing psycho-social support to them.

Mr Mufurukye Fred NRS Director General, the Chief Guest during the launch represented the Minister of State of Social Affairs (Local Government) said that what brought us here today is very possible to achieve it in Rwanda:  to eradicate addictions and delinquency.  Lets’ all join hands together and make this problem ours, and making it personal.  We will fight it using different approaches and eradicate it right from the grass roots.

National Rehabilitation Service Director General Mufurukye Fred said in Rwanda everything is possible.

Purpose Rwanda projects are crucial tools in achieving these core objectives. This was citizens’ campaign and it therefore calls for involvement of the citizens:

1.Addictions Prevention and Awareness Campaigns with focus on Content Production and Airing Programs (on TV and Radio), Documentaries, Publications- Magazines, School and University programs and other online and physical campaigns, Research about Addiction status, preventive and management solutions.

  1. Development of Addictions Prevention and Management Based School Curriculums which will be for (S1- S6). This helps in improving knowledge on dangers of addictions and how to prevent them.
  2. Strengthening Addictions Outpatients Services: early identification of beneficiaries and treating them helps in reducing changes of deadly effects on them. Setting Rehab centers, using international standard of Addicts Anonymous in line with local realties, counselling and detoxification.
  3. Empowerment and Deployment of Watchmen and Women: Watchmen/women are mainly recovered addicts who take on a special role of reaching out to and bring in for rehabilitation many still struggling with addictions.
  4. Re-Integration of Recovered Addiction Patients into the community as Purposeful Agents of Transformation (This involves using follow up mechanism, feeding, Purpose Development process, the accountability groups to avoid relapse and ensure compliance to objectives set in implementing own life purpose).
  5. Establishing 5 Sobriety Rehab Facilities, each in every province of Rwanda. This helps in bringing services closer to the community.
  6. Monitoring and Evaluation project. This tool enables Purpose Rwanda ensure sufficient guide in implementation of programs and projects, to ensure efficient allocation of resources, helps on measuring the impact of Purpose Rwanda Strategic Plan in achieving sustainable output.

Life under addictions is not and cannot be part of our value and way of life. Even if it affects few of us, it affects the whole country.

Together as citizens, we are called upon to embrace Citizen’s Campaign Against Delinquency and Addictions in order to build a Purposeful and Addiction Free Generation.