First photo: Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency Assistant Secretary Diosdado Carreon, Dangerous Drugs Board Undersecretary Benjamin Reyes, Department of the Interior and Local Government Undersecretary Ricojudge Echiverri, and Anti-Drug Abuse Coalitions of Philippines, Inc. Chairperson Dr. Raquel Tolentino join the opening ceremony of the conference.
Second photo: Office of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs Director Kelia Cummins delivers the welcome message during the opening ceremony.
Manila, October 28, 2021—On October 28, the 4th National Conference of the Association of Anti-Drug Abuse Coalitions of the Philippines, Inc. (AADAC) formally convened with the theme “Building Resilience Through Policy and Advocacy.”
Sponsored by the U.S. Embassy in the Philippines’ Office of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) in partnership with the Philippine Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) and Department of the Interior and Local Government, AADAC’s virtual opening ceremony was attended by 27 coalition members and reached 3,500 individual members nationwide.
AADAC is a non-profit, non-governmental, umbrella organization of community level anti-drug abuse coalitions, and serves as a partner of local and national government on drug prevention and advocacy.
“AADAC brings together several sectors of society – law enforcement, health, education, youth, civil society, business, academicians and researchers, faith-based groups, and policy making bodies,” said INL Director Kelia Cummins. “This interdisciplinary collaboration and intersectional cooperation helps sustain programs and foster policies that facilitate quality of life changes for persons who use drugs, their families, and the community.”
“Working together is necessary… as a comprehensive and balanced approach is vital in addressing the drug problem,” added DDB Secretary Catalino Cuy.
This year’s conference will provide an opportunity for the coalition and its members to share, enhance, and implement evidence-based drug prevention approaches relevant to the needs of local communities in the Philippines.
Support for anti-drug abuse coalitions is part of INL’s broader drug demand reduction program in the Philippines, designed to improve awareness, augment use of preventive measures, and engage multi-sectoral stakeholders in recovery and reintegration efforts for persons with substance use disorder.
Learn more about the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement and its Drug Demand Reduction programs globally at www.state.gov/j/inl