Sister stands up to drugs

2016-07-19 06:00
Photo: nosipho mkhize Katsi Youth in Action members (from left) Hlombakazi Nophakela, Zipho Mkhize and Sanelisiwe Dlamini.

Photo: nosipho mkhize Katsi Youth in Action members (from left) Hlombakazi Nophakela, Zipho Mkhize and Sanelisiwe Dlamini.

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

WHEN her brother died from a drug overdose, Zipho Mkhize, the founder of NGO Katsi Youth in Action, decided it was time to take action by helping young drug addicts.

“My brother was a drug addict and a drug dealer. He distributed many types of drugs, while at the same time using them. He started using drugs at the age of 13. I got to know about them because he used them in front of me at home.
“He was in and out of jail. He lived his entire life under the influence of drugs and shifted from one drug to another. He never stopped until he died in 2013 at the age of 41.”

After Mkhize’s brother died she realised five months later that his son was smoking dagga.
“I spoke to a lady named Joey du Plessis from Careline in Hillcrest., which helped a lot because she taught me that addiction is not a choice, it is genetic. Drugs are a choice, not an addiction.
“Then I remembered that my dad died at the age of 39 from hepatitis B, caused by alcohol.
“Addiction is like a brain disease so people must be taught about it. That’s when I decided to help my son and his friends to get clean.”

Kastsi Youth in Action was established in 2013 and now operates at Kwadabeka at the eZimbambelweni Old Age Home premises. The organisation implements various programmes including detox programmes where addicts are taken to Kwadabeka Clinic for detox, prevention programmes where members conduct drug awareness campaigns in schools, community events, parents school meetings and churches in Pinetown­, Hillcrest and surrounding areas.

“We work with 22 schools in Clermont. We recently went to Kwanyuswa where we held drug awareness talks at Siyajabula High School. We played a big part in Kwamashu after pupils died due to an ecstasy overdose last month.

“We do early intervention programmes for new drug users who have not reached ‘disaster phase’. We see them individually at our offices or at schools once a week for two hours for three months.
“We normally get clients after we conduct drug awareness talks - some of them come to us while others are referred by parents, teachers, principals and police.
“During our talks we teach them about different types of drugs and their side effects. We teach them about areas­ of recovery and the meaning of relapse and triggers, then we monitor them by conducting urine tests, which tell us the type of drug the person is using and whether they have shifted from one drug to another.”

She said they also do home visits, which is called family joint counselling.
“We do home visits for addicts who want to quit a particular drug, and that’s when we teach them about that specific drug and its side effects as well the withdrawal symptoms. Then we nominate a family member to be the addict’s supporter.”

The organisation gets funding from jumbo sales and fund-raising events and rely on donations.
A Kwadabeka resident Ntombi Ndlovu said: “I received a call from my child’s school informing me that my child was caught smoking dagga and they referred me to this organisation. “I am glad we will receive the help that is needed.”

For more information contact 081 093 7599.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Competition regulation for a growing and inclusive economy

ADVERTORIAL: The Competition Commission of South Africa is conducting advocacy work in the South African automotive aftermarket industry and has gazetted a Draft Code of Conduct for public comment.


WATCH: Man films himself going down water slide upside down as things go very wrong…

What is at first an exciting tummy-turning adventure stunt, quickly turns into a scarily bad idea caught on camera. Take a look:


You won't want to miss...

Best date night restaurants in South Africa
WATCH: Ryan Reynolds offers fans a free tattoo in new Deadpool 2 teaser
Should you date your co-worker?
Hip Cape Town bars to discover this summer
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.