As part of a major initiative to wean schoolchildren from the growing scourge of alcohol, narcotics and drug addiction, the Vimukthi Mission, under the leadership of the Excise Department, is launching a project to channel the students’ energy in the creative pursuit of the arts and sports, in addition to helping them improve their academic performance.
The project called Unarvu will be carried out in association with associations of parents of school pupils, representatives of civic organizations and residents’ associations as well as traders and businessmen from the locality.
Unarvu, which translates to ‘awakening’ in Malayalam, seeks to deter children from using drugs, to give them confidence and train them in creative activities and to identify and nurture their talents in the arts and sports.
As a first step, the project will select four schools in each of the state’s 14 districts. Excise officials will visit educational institutions, study drug-related issues and form a committee that will define a program of action. The activities will be carried out under the guidance of a high-level panel within the Excise Commission which includes sports experts.
Vimukthi’s mission will provide counseling and treatment to children suspected of drug use, and students will receive arts and sports training.
Unarvu will also provide basic infrastructure and training facilities in schools. The pilot project is being implemented in four schools in Thiruvananthapuram.