Date(s) - Thu - 15 Mar
2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Dear friends of the UFC,
Please join Sibonelo Gumede’s Seminar presentation entitled, ‘Pathways to radically improved quality of life for heroin users in Durban: an ethnographic account of Opioid Substitution Therapy six months down’, Hosted by DUT’s Urban Futures Centre.
PRESENTER: Sibonelo Dumede
TOPIC: ‘Pathways to radically improved quality of life for heroin users in Durban: an
ethnographic account of Opioid Substitution Therapy six months down’
DATE: Thursday, 15th March 2018
VENUE: Steve Biko Campus – DUT, UFC offices, S2 Block, Level 4, Room DP4.01B (UFC Common Room). Entrance Gate 1 & 2. 79 Steve Biko Road
In the past ten years, the use of low-grade heroin (known as whoonga or nyaope) by people from marginalised communities in South Africa has become increasingly widespread. Yet currently in Durban, and in South Africa, good evidenced-based interventions to reduce the harm associated with drug use do not exist in Durban. Existing ‘rehabilitation’ programmes have very low level of success, particularly for heroin users. It is for this reason that the Urban Futures Center at DUT, together with TB HIV Care established South Africa’s first low threshold Opioid Substitution Therapy (OST) programme, as a means for demonstrating the effectiveness of OST and for advocating for making OST publicly available. In order to advocate for this, it is critical to be able to demonstrate that access to good OST leads to a marked improvement in quality of life. Ethnographic observations, interviews and focus group discussions have been conducted to establish the pathways of the 50 beneficiaries who are part of the Durban OST Demonstration Project. This seminar provides insight into the life changes that have taken place since the programme began in April 2017. These findings will be used in advocating for the necessity for the public provision of OST to people who use drugs and are keen to turn their lives around.
Sibonelo Gumede is a research manager at the Urban Futures Centre working on the Opioid Substitution Therapy project. He holds a Masters in Development Studies from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal.
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