The U.S. Department of State Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL)-organized virtual conference sessions of the 3rd National Conference of the Anti-Drug Abuse Coalitions of the Philippines, Inc. (AADAC) will take place from November 30 to December 2.

The conference is in partnership with the Dangerous Drugs Board and Department of the Interior and Local Government. The INL is providing P1.6 million (USD33,000) to support the virtual conference.

Following the theme “Community Coalitions Under Changing Situations,” this year’s conference will provide 230 participating AADAC members nationwide with up-to-date, relevant, and evidence-based information on drug prevention interventions for their respective communities as the coalitions’ work expands into addressing challenges associated with the global COVID-19 pandemic.

AADAC is a non-profit, non-governmental organization with 27 local member organizations across the Philippines. Coalition coordinators are trained by the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA) to be partners of the local and national government in conducting community assessments, building capacity, strategic planning, and program implementation relevant to drug abuse prevention.

INL Manila previously supported the successful 1st and 2nd National Conferences of AADAC. AADAC was the first CADCA member globally to host a gathering of all local member organizations.

INL’s assistance to anti-drug abuse coalitions is one facet of its broader support for drug demand reduction programs in the Philippines, designed to improve awareness, intensify preventive measures, and engage multi-sectoral stakeholders for the recovery and reintegration of persons with substance use disorders into the community.

During the launch, INL Director Kelia Cummins noted the program aims to provide community leaders the necessary tools to be adaptive and remain resilient during the fight against the pandemic to ensure continuous delivery of drug prevention interventions and services.