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The world drug report of 2021 estimates

A Rise in Drug use of 11% by 2030

One of the main threats to the future of our children is exposure to the growing trend of narcotics and substance abuse.

Narcotics and Substance
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Children Matter programme identity

An international forum advocating Children's right for a drug-free childhood

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Civil Society Members Policy Makers Child Right Advocates Government Representatives Prevention-treatment-recovery Professionals Youth Leaders

Aims of the Forum


Establish the need to create Substance Abuse Free Environments for children around the world (Article 33 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child - UNCRC).


Advocate the relevance of primary prevention in national drug policies to protect children.


Domesticate the recommendations of the United Nations General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) with children as a priority and sharing best practices.


The forum will have national and international speakers. Delegates will include civil society members, policy makers, national and state commissions on child rights, government representatives, prevention-treatment-recovery professionals and youth leaders from various nations.


Fourth Wave Foundation - Project Venda A project of the Fourth Wave Foundation, Project VENDA works in Kerala, India to effectively contain and manage the issue of substance abuse among children and teenagers by creating S.A.F.E. (Substance Abuse Free Environments)

World Federation Against Drugs is a multilateral community of 365 member organisations and over 400 individuals in 63 countries, who share the common aim to strengthen prevention, increase access to treatment and to promote recovery. WFAD specifically addresses the needs and rights of women and children within our field.

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime For two decades, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has been helping make the world safer from drugs, organised crime, corruption and terrorism. We are committed to achieving health, security and justice for all by tackling these threats and promoting peace and sustainable well-being as deterrents to them.


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The Venue

O by Tamara

At O by Tamara, the highest priority is providing outstanding standards of hospitality to every guest. The hotel offers three categories of rooms, each designed to perfection and fitted with every amenity required and desired by the luxury business traveller. Each room and suite is an exquisitely designed space to unwind in after a long day of work, fitted with a luxurious king-sized or twin bed, a 43” HD smart TV, electronic safe, stocked minibar, walk-in shower, and laundry services.

NH By Pass Venpalavattom, Anayara, Trivandrum – 695029

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Youth Forum & S.A.F.E.TY

FOURTH WAVE FOUNDATION, in association with the Colombo Plan Drug Advisory (DAP), will host a Youth Forum alongside the Children Matter Forum to promote youth leadership in drug demand reduction by fostering youth engagement and youth-led initiatives. The Youth Forum will consist of youth participants aiming to influence and prevent drug abuse through peer-led intervention, which includes drug prevention education and examples of drug-free lifestyles. The forum will provide reliable information and will be an opportunity for the youth to interact with young people from different environments worldwide. We will witness youth networking for change through best practices and learning about substance abuse prevention and harm reduction innovations.

Youth from across Kerala will come together on the final day of the Forum as part of S.A.F.E.TY- Substance Abuse Free Environment Team Youth, to advocate for a drug-free childhood.


Why Children Matter

The world drug report of 2021 estimates

A Rise in Drug use of 11% by 2030

One of the main threats to the future of our children is exposure to the growing trend of narcotics and substance abuse.

Narcotics and Substance

The debilitating menace of drug abuse now prevalent among children and youth causes too many childhoods to be cut short. In this context, embracing Child Rights' Convention's Article 33 (States Parties shall take all appropriate measures, to protect children from the illicit use of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances) and the science of the adolescent brain development, nations from all over the world must unify to protect young persons from the initiation, production, and trafficking of drugs.

The World Drug Report of 2021 estimates a rise in drug use of 11% by 2030. The increase will mainly appear in lower-income countries, estimated to encompass 40% of the total increase. Marijuana legalisation has led to a global normalisation of the drug among youth. Alongside a normalisation of marijuana through popular culture. It is also curious to note that the potency of marijuana has increased four-fold between 1995 and 2019 through the propagation of hybrid lab bred varieties that is widely prevalent across the globe.

The National Mental Health Survey repeatedly shows 75% treatment gap for drug use disorders. It is indicative that merely 5% of people with illicit drug use disorders receive inpatient care. Children from families affected by the problem, children in need of care and children in conflict with the law are major concerns for those working for the welfare and safety of children to realise the Article 33 of the UNCRC.

Poor accessibility to quality health care and social care programs for people grappling with substance use disorders will be a major concern in the next decade. There is also an urgent need to understand early deflection or dissuasion programs to help them breakout of the clutches of crime groups by focusing on reformation that supports need for treatment and rehabilitation for substance use disorders is paramount.

Partner with us

When you partner with this initiative, you will be endorsing the simple fact that children and our future matter. You will be investing in the priceless wealth that good health and happiness bring — not just to your home but to every home in your community.

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Previous Conference

Asian Regional Forum against drugs 2019

33 countries participated and created a 5 year road map to manage the drug and narcotic prevalence in their respective countries with a particular focus on youth.