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Reformed drug addicts embark on environment cleaning

A group of reformed drug addicts from Kutus in Kirinyaga County has taken to cleaning the environment as a way of keeping themselves busy.

The group comprising of fifty members have already formed a community-based organization and now wants more of those affected to join them in the rehabilitation programme.

Hamishi Ramadhan, an Imam with a mosque in Kutus, said he took the initiative of organizing the former addicts into a working group, which has prevented them from going back to the old habits.

He said the community in Kutus has also been supportive of the group in that they support them with some little cash for the collection and dumping of waste from their houses every week.

“We are grateful to the community. The little they give has been able to support the group and have kept them going,” he said.

“Sometimes the addicts get back to their old habits out of desperation and lack of support and something to keep them busy,” he said.

The Chairperson of the group Kassim Abdala said they seized the opportunity of cleaning the environment after realizing the neglect of the cleaning services by the County government.

Abdala however said they are faced with the challenges of the mode of transport where they are forced to use donkey cart to get the waste from the estates.

He said they also needed support in acquiring hand gloves; working equipment and appealed to the county government and well-wishers to come to their service.

A reformed addict Tony Kariuki who hails from Mombasa said the group has greatly assisted him in getting rid of his old character and has even managed to get himself a wife and a family.

He said he was engaged in drug addiction for over ten years, even to a point of going to jail at Shimo la Tewa and Gathigiri prison Kirinyaga County.

Caroline Wangari said a friend who has since died introduced her to drugs. She said was dirty and would not be able to eat well but she is now healthy and believes she will soon get a man of her life.

She said those who were still engaged should join the group and get the necessary assistance towards quitting the practice.

Kirinyaga County government in the past operated a programme of assisting the victims who would require medication and gave such remedies by qualified medical doctors who were part of the rehabilitation team.

The government had also identified five counselors in each of the 20 Wards in the County who were required to visit the victims in their respective homes for further counseling.

By Irungu Mwangi

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