THE SAY NO TO GLUE CAMPAIGN
Made in the Streets’ mission is to rescue children from the streets of Nairobi, Kenya. There are an estimated 60,000 children living and working on the streets of Nairobi.
When a child goes to the streets, they quickly join gangs, known as bases. Base life is dangerous and drug use is rampant. Glue is one of the most common drugs used by street children. It is cheap, readily available and highly addictive. The substance is huffed out of bottles and results in a debilitating high. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime has reported that glue sniffing is at the core of “street culture” in Nairobi, Kenya, and that the majority of street children in the city are habitual solvent users.
The issue of drug use is complex. Street children huff glue because of intense social pressure in the bases and to numb their hunger pains. The long-term health risks of glue use are varied and sometimes grim. At MITS, our challenge is to help street children resist the temptation to start using glue and quit the addiction if they have already become users.
In order to live and learn at Made in the Streets’ school, the children must agree to leave the glue behind. The years of addiction are very hard for a teen to overcome and there are many young people still on the streets of Nairobi who hope to join MITS one day. If they ever want to leave their circumstances on the streets, they must demonstrate their commitment to change by saying no to glue.
Like the “Just Say No” campaign of the 80s, our “Say No to Glue” campaign has a simple and memorable slogan. It is our prayer that through education and positive reinforcement, we can help street children make the choice to say no to drug use.
For every “Say No to Glue” shirt purchased, Made in the Streets will give one to a young person on the streets. It’s not about giving away clothes; it’s about the statement. We hope the message on the shirt will remind the wearer and their peers that their futures are worth more than the temporary high of drugs. Wouldn’t it be amazing if one day there were no more street kids in Nairobi? Let’s make this problem history.
Read more: article on the role of glue use in the lives of Kenyan street children
ORDER YOUR SAY NO TO GLUE SHIRT FROM THE MITS ONLINE STORE.