Lanre Odukoya writes about the tireless effort of a group to keep youths off drugs and the exhilarating experience of some who graduated recently from its rehabilitation facility
Christ Against Drug Abuse Ministry (CADAM), a non-governmental organization under the auspices of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, recently graduated over thirty rehabilitated alcoholics, drug addicts and people living with all forms of addiction from its rehabilitation centre.
The convocation ceremony which held at the Liberty Hall, a parish in the outskirts of Epe local government area of Lagos had in attendance pastors from different parishes, families of the beneficiaries and congregational members from Acme, Ogba parish where the ministry’s dream was birthed.
According to Dr. Dokun Adedeji, the National Coordinator of the rehabilitation programme, “CADAM is poised to saving lives of people who are straying on accounts of addiction to drugs and alcohols. Our mission is to impact the love and knowledge of Christ in them so that they can see that they have a second chance to live a better life.
“It’s usually a 12-month programme. After interviewing them when some of them visit us either by referrals or mere discovery of what we do here, they are taught the love of Christ, consequences of alcohol or drug abuse and made to see how beautiful life can be outside the captivity of addiction. We dine, wine, do sports and study together in the first six months. Thereafter, they are made to decidedly choose a vocation for which we get professionals to train them. They acquire the skills and it becomes a tool to live with when the program is over. It’s been fifteen years of transforming lives.”
The testament of the Best Beneficiary male, Kayode Peters, partly reads: “I was living under the bridge and has been locked up in Kirikiri Prison for auto theft. I wanted to go and rob a bank when a member of CADAM preached to me. Grudgingly, I listened and the words of God located me. I agreed to join the rehabilitation program and today, I bless God that I took the right decision. I used to have a master key with which I could open any lock, but I’ve traded that for the bible and I have no regrets. I’m going to the mission school from here by God’s grace.”
Best Beneficiary female, Janet Eboyigbe, also shared her story: “I took to drugs since 1993 after someone disappointed me. I joined a bad company here in Lagos where I began to drink and smoke. Later on, they introduced me to drugs, cocaine in particular, they said it would make me forget everything that I’d been through. I could afford it in 1993 because it wasn’t this expensive then. Gradually, it got more expensive. A friend of mine who was in the joint with us introduced me to CADAM. We just noticed that we weren’t seeing her any longer. Meanwhile, she had come for this program and she was looking so different and more beautiful when I saw her. After telling me her story, I asked her what they give people in CADAM, she told me they give food and clothes. I told her that that was not what I needed and that I have a family that is very comfortable. I asked her, do they do any other thing there? I was already tired of the life I was living. She told me that they pray and fast and I said that’s exactly what I needed.”
The beneficiaries were certified in various vocations like electrical services, catering, bead making, paintings and computer literacy.