'Friend' against drugs launched
By Alia Al Theeb, Staff Reporter
Published: June 27, 2008, 00:07
Dubai: The experiences of reformed drug addicts form a major component of an electronic information programme named "Friend", which aims to spread awareness on the dangers of drug addiction.
Dubai Police have developed an electronic information kiosk, which contains medical and scientific information on the dangers of drug addiction.
Fifteen of these kiosks have been distributed to government and private schools, to spread awareness among school pupils and university and college students.
The "Friend" device contains video and audio messages and uses touch-screen technology.
Maj Gen Khamis Mattar Al Mazeina, Acting Chief of Dubai Police, said the police have submitted a request to the UAE's Ministry of Economy to register the patent and copyright of the device under the police's name. It is one of a kind and was 100 per cent locally developed.
He said the police have received an official letter from the United Nations office in Cairo, asking them to provide a copy of the device to the United Nations Headquarters in Vienna to display it in their main hall.
"The information kiosk answers the needs of this generation, who are fond of technology. The device displays information and video clips in Arabic and English," Maj Gen Al Mazeina said.
The device also tells the real-life stories of two reformed drug addicts and their bitter experience as former addicts. One of them currently studies in Cairo while the other worked at the anti-narcotic department. The stories aim to help the youth steer clear of anything that could lead to drug addiction.
Maj Gen Al Mazeina said according to a field study to measure the benefit of the device on pupils in the past few months, the device helped increase knowledge on the dangers of drug addiction and prevention by 90 per cent.
Maj Gen Khamis Mattar Al Mazeina, Acting Chief of Dubai Police, launches the electronic device 'Friend' that will spread awareness on drugs.