WORLD MENTAL HEALTH DAY is observed on the 10th of OCTOBER the world over. In Zimbabwe it is spearheaded by the Ministry of Health and Child Welfare. The overall objective of this day is to raise awareness of Mental Health issues around the world and mobilizing resources and efforts in support of Mental Health. The theme for 2015 is promoting dignity to mental health.

Communities Against Drug and Substance Abuse (CADASA Trust) is a youth serving registered trust working in the area of drug and substance abuse. Our vision is a world free of drug and substance abuse. CADASA Trust engages schools, churches and tertiary institutions with its Prevention and Awareness programme dubbed High on Life to measure how much children and youths know about drugs and in turn gifts them with their effects so they are able to make informed decisions. Our hope and expectation is that every child we encounter becomes an anti-drug activist so we create a drug free generation for Zimbabwe’s future leaders.

In line with CADASA Trust’s vision to create a drug free environment that enables children and youths to reach their full potential by providing access to information on drug and substance abuse, CADASA Trust is joining hands with like-minded organisations like The Mental Health Trust to observe the Mental Health Day at Harare Gardens on Saturday the 10th.  Together we will be celebrating with children living with different forms of mental health challenges that include Down Syndrome, Angelman Syndrome, Fragile X, Autism, Bipolar Disorder, Schizophrenia, Attention Deficit Disorder, Multiple Personality Disorder and Substance Abuse Induced Psychosis. CADASA will join with other like-minded institutions and take this opportunity to highlight the talents of differently abled children and appreciate their gifts.

Drug and Substance abuse is the cause of a Mental Health disorder called SUBSTANCE ABUSE INDUCED PSYCHOSIS. This is a real cause for concern as it can be prevented unlike some other mental health disorders. Drugs and substances when abused by a pregnant mother also may cause the unborn child to suffer from mental Ill-health, birth defects, Neonatal Abstinence Disorder and Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder whereby the child comes out already addicted. This is also preventable.

CADASA has taken the initiative to educate the masses on the effects of drug and substances with the hope of saving youths from self-induced mental health disorders. Mental Health Disorders should be a concern for all Zimbabweans as it affects the individual, the family and the community at large. The family invests in a child’s education with the hope that once the child has succeeded, they will be self-reliant and can also help the family- It’s not fair for the family when this child falls victim to drugs- it is as good as a bad investment. The same can be said about the individual himself who has dreams and aspirations for themselves that if exposed to drugs can be stolen from them. CADASA strongly believes that drugs steal futures. Drug and Substance abuse is equally detrimental to a nation as the productive age can be lost to drug induced psychosis where they are no longer able to participate in the country’s development or can be lost to drug induced premature deaths.

As part of CADASA’s efforts to promote zero drug use and abuse, we are joining hands with other organisations that deal with children and mental health all over the world to observe the World Mental Health day so we promote dignity to mental health as the 2015 theme rightly says.

Problems associated with Drug Induced Mental Ill-health include:

Suicidal thoughts, withdrawn behaviour, memory loss, isolation because of poor relations, reduced problem solving skills, attention difficulties, stealing to sustain habit, homelessness, aggressive behaviour, DEATH.

The Role of Parents in the war against self-induced Mental health disorders

Drug and Substance abuse is a new evil within our beloved Zimbabwe. An evil that has been brought about by the porous border posts and by the idleness of the youths. The need to experiment, peer pressure, unemployment, misinformation, availability of substances within reach of children in the home are just but some of the factors that are contributing to the upsurge. We want to believe Zimbabwe once enjoyed a drug free society- when you the parent was growing up- surely you should want the same privilege for your child.

No doubt our role as parents is ensuring we talk to our kids, we know their friends, we instil a good value system within them, we have a relationship with their teacher, we are present in their lives, fully present so they are never coerced into drugs. That means there has to be


  • Family harmony and stability
  • Caring and Supportive parenting
  • Emotional support during times of trauma
  • Strong family values
  • Strong cultural identity – we are Zimbabweans, we have an anti-drug culture, let us not borrow from the global world, lets have pride in our own identity, it starts from you the parent.


At CADASA we strive to promote good mental health by gifting Zimbabweans with the anti-drug message that ensures kids do not fall victim to drugs and their effects which in turn can lead to drug induced psychosis. We understand that youths are tempted to experiment but yet we feel if they are sensitized about the effects of drugs in the body they are able to make informed decisions if offered drugs. At CADASA we believe drug free youths have a higher chance of realising their dreams and aspirations. DRUGS RUIN FAMILIES, COMMUNITIES AND LIVES. SAY NO TO DRUGS!!! CADASA promotes good mental health in Zimbabwe’s future leaders if the country is to move forward.



Compiled by Mazvita Shonhiwa for Communities Against Drug and Substance Abuse- CADASA Trust

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