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Drugs and substance abuse prevention through an awareness and skills development centre for Chatsworth.

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Many programmes have been developed to address the pandemic of drugs and substance abuse amongst young people. All of these initiatives differ in terms of their objectives and nature of the organisations to provide services and strategies to curb drugs and substance abuse. Some initiatives are focussed on the post effects through rehabilitation and therapy, whilst others attempt to reduce the supply and availability of drugs through law enforcement. Still others are focused on changing policy and legislature to legitimise the use of drugs, and provide users over the age of 18 with special legal rights. This research is based on drug and substance abuse amongst the youth. Since the effect of drugs and substance abuse amongst young people and children differs significantly to that of adults, any of the approaches will be biased against young people. Therefore, this dissertation is focused fundamentally on the primary early intervention and prevention of drugs and substance abuse. The literature examines the damaging effects of drugs and substance abuse amongst the youth, both globally and locally. Primary prevention is one of the most sought-after approaches when dealing with adolescents. In order to pursue this approach, more positive elements need to be implemented in both individuals and their environments. This could be a step forward in reducing the perils of drug abuse and in building a more resilient youth. To further best develop an appropriate design response to this social issue, the research looks at social theory and its connection to architecture. Architecture’s obligation is to be the catalyst for this social interaction. Through design, the creation of connected environments in the urban realm must come from knowledgeable decisions, so that they may be useful to the community at large. There is nothing superfluous about this approach. Rather, it adopts the notion that architecture has a social function – that addressing the needs of people or society is of primary concern. There are many people working in the area of Chatsworth to implement various programs that create awareness and prevention of drugs and substance abuse. The simple introduction of a youth facility within the area can help initiate a platform that further encourages a positive and supportive environment to these prevention initiatives. There are currently multiple initiatives that are operational to curb the drug and substance abuse issue. However, none of these can be deemed as efficient. In dealing with the abuse of drugs amongst youth, the ideal and most effective approach would be to promote primary prevention.


Masters in Architecture. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban 2016.


Central places--South Africa--KwaZulu-Natal., Substance abuse--South Africa--KwaZulu-Natal--Prevention., Substance abuse treatment facilities--South Africa--KwaZulu-Natal., Youth centers--South Africa--KwaZulu-Natal--Designs and plans., Rehabilitation centers--South Africa--KwaZulu-Natal., Theses--Architecture.