Officials from the Koh Kong provincial Department of Culture and Fine Arts have been active in displaying educational messages in schools and other public places on the dangers of drug use.

Aiming to raise awareness among young people and reduce drug use in society, other provinces have done likewise.

Department director Sambo Sophea told The Post that the educational messages have been placed in important public places such as schools so students in particular would see them. The campaign began on June 1.

The messages include “Good Youths are United in Getting Rid of Drugs”, “Say No to Drugs”, “Drugs Cause Violence and Crime”, and “Drugs Destroy the Studies and Lives of Youth”, Sophea said.

“The Future is in Your hands, Never Use Drugs”, “The Intellectual does not Associate with Gamblers and Drinkers”, and “The Wise do not Associate with Drug Users” were also among the slogans displayed, she added.

“We are spreading the message as to the dangers of drugs, and showing the consequences stemming from drugs, for society to join in reducing their use,” Sophea said.

Brigadier General Sun Khiem, deputy police chief of the province’s anti-drug department, said his officers have cracked down on drug crimes after receiving clear information from the public. He cited a recent crackdown more than two months ago, when police seized more than 200kg of drugs in Sre Ambel district and arrested seven people.

Khiem said that although Koh Kong province borders Thailand, drugs have not been smuggled into the country so far.

He said that in addition to law enforcement, the police are also spreading information to people and students in order to reduce drug use.

“We have handed out leaflets and put up notices on the impact of drug use and the damage to society, families and the users themselves. We have put up banners to make people and students understand the dangers of drug use,” Khiem said.

In Mondulkiri province, culture department director Touch said anti-drug messages were also being placed at important sites to make young people, students and the general public aware of the dangers.

More importantly, he said, in addition to spreading the anti-drugs message, provincial officials reached out to the public, showing them videos and asking them questions, with such an approach more effective in getting people to understand the dangers.

“We have video clips released by the Ministry of Interior, and we post educational messages on YouTube to show the negative impacts of drug use,” he said.

“We quiz people on the message after they have watched the videos, and there are rewards. While wrong answers and right answers get rewarded the same, we correct them if they answer wrongly.”