As the Senior Superintendent for the Chief of Police for Kathmandu, Basanta Raj Kunwar searched for ways to help those addicted to drugs find a new, healthy life. None of the methods of drug addiction treatment he investigated resulted in long-lasting improvement - until he found Narconon. In the Narconon method of de-addiction (as drug rehab is called in Nepal), he found that 60 to 70 percent of graduates remain sober after graduation. This was what he had been looking for.
Kunwar and his family trained on the Narconon method of providing substance abuse treatment and opened their own center in Kathmandu, Narconon Nepal Drug Treatment center, capable of serving 60 addicts at once. The center has seen so much growth that now, just a few years after opening, they are building a new center that can house 150 people in drug recovery at one time. This drug treatment facility will overlook Kathmandu's valley and provide a stunning view of the Himalayan Mountains.
But Kunwar knew that far more than drug rehab treatment was needed if he was going to make a big change in Nepal. He began to visit schools, community centers and military organizations to use the Narconon drug education curriculum to educate the listeners on the dangers of drug use. In 2008, more than 172,000 school children heard his message. Another 320,000 in communities across Nepal were also educated. Kunwar even traveled to the UK to bring the message to the many Nepalese who had emigrated to that country, reaching 73,000 children.
Not satisfied with the number of people he could reach personally, Kunwar arranged for the Narconon drug education message to be carried on television shows and appear in newspapers. This way, he was able to reach more than six million people.
He even organized an Anti-Drug Street Rally that brought together 5,000 people to bring attention to the problems presented by addiction and lack of effective drug treatment centers.
Kunwar, as Executive Director of Narconon Nepal, is working on a schedule of drug education that will visit 42 major cities throughout the country. He has brought 11,000 people through the Kathmandu Narconon center to learn about their methods of drug rehabilitation. In August 2009, the State Minister for Home Affairs commended Narconon Nepal, stating that Narconon "is producing real, life-saving results." He also said that he "will expect and appreciate the continuing cooperation of Narconon International."
In Narconon, Basanta Raj Kunwar has found a de-addiction method that can reverse the trends of the last few decades and bring productive recovery to the many thousands who have become trapped in addiction.
Narconon Nepal continues its excellent work spreading the truth about drugs throughout Nepal and neighboring countries.
Not only are they making drug-free lives at the rehab center in Kathmandu, but this year they've educated over 7 million people through TV, radio, papers, and over 500,000 of them reached through direct drug prevention presentations in schools and several other venues in the community such as the armed forces and other events.
In June, Narconon Nepal staff went to Delhi, India, to give a 2-day workshop about drug abuse prevention. Also, Basanta Kunwar, Executive Director Narconon Nepal, was nominated as representative of Drug Prevention program for the Nepal SAARC (South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation) at the New Delhi conference.
On the 26th of June, they participated at the United Nation International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking in the Basantapur Durbar Square.
Pictures from top: Basanta Kunwar, Narconon Nepal Executive Director, giving a presentation to kids; More drug prevention; Drug prevention in a Nepalese school.