A crusader against the drug menace

[ Gijum Tali ]

Kennedy Bagra, from Bagra village in West Siang district, has been rendering selfless service to the society in the field of drug abuse, and creating awareness for the last 10 years with utmost dedication and sincerity.

He himself was a drug addict for 18 long years and struggled all through his youthful days, but came out successfully as a recovered addict to render inspirational and yeoman service, associating himself with Mother’s Vision, an NGO struggling to create an addiction-free society since 2014.

With his help and support, Mother’s Vision could successfully conduct various awareness campaigns and counselling sessions on drugs and its ill-effects at various schools, colonies, sectors and villages.

Bagra is a resource person who can spellbind not only drug addicts but a host of listeners attending his awareness programmes, where he provides counselling to drug users and helps them recover by supporting, motivating, inspiring and mentoring them, so that they can rejoin the society as changed persons and start their lives all over again.

Bagra has helped with the recovery of countless users, and several of the recovered users are now working with him in his endeavor to create an addiction-free society. His contribution towards a drug-free society is immense, and his 18 years’ experience as an addict has helped him to understand drug addicts from a deeper level, and he knows how to approach them and convince them to quit using drugs and return back to normal life in the society.

He voluntarily oversees the ‘100 days’ de-addiction-cum-rehabilitation centre founded by the NGO. With him as a mentor and his supporting team, Mother’s Vision’s de-addiction-cum-rehabilitation centre is running successfully and rendering valuable service to all drug addicts of the district and other parts of the state.

Bagra and his team have helped 20 percent of the total addicts recover, and they in turn are helping him in the fight against the menace.

Due to his untiring effort in this field, a ‘recovery club’ was introduced to encourage and motivate recovering addicts and alcoholics and support those who are ready to join the mainstream of life again. He conceived it with a mission to not leave them astray but give them a protective environment after treatment.

The recovery club is composed of an NA/AA meeting room, a kitchen, a personal sharing room, a restroom with a capacity to accommodate four persons at a time, with attached toilet and bathroom. Eleven recovery addicts are attending the NA/AA meetings at the recovery club.

Bagra’s contribution in containing the ever spreading menace of drugs in the society is outstanding and exemplary. Though he is only Class 9 passed due to addiction in his schooldays, he can write and speak very good English, which puts him in an advantageous position to take up training anywhere, even in national level seminars and training programmes.

At present he is managing the drug de-addiction and rehabilitation centre established by Mother’s Vision in Gumi Nagar in Aalo. (The writer is DIPRO, West Siang)