Christian spirituality as protective factors against drug and substance abuse by Zimbabwean youths: A case of the Catholic Church in Gweru urban.


  • Precious Dube Midlands State University, Zimbabwe


Drug and alcohol abuse, among adolescents is a global phenomenon not limited to a specific culture or religion. Zimbabwe faces an acute alcohol and drug addiction pandemic. The abuse of drugs by the youths has become a cause for concern and a growing body of research suggests that religion is an important protective factor against drug and substance abuse; and that religion may help in the rehabilitation of drug addicts by enabling them to find meaning, direction and purpose in life. The Catholic Church (in Zimbabwe) has taken a firm stance against substance abuse. This paper assesses how Christian spirituality can be used as a protective factor against drug and substance abuse.  Qualitatively, and using a case study approach, a total of 22 purposively sampled congregants participated in the study.  Results show that there are so many drugs being abused by most youths. These include marijuana, bronclee, mangemba, cane spirit, PP tablets, codeine, Tegu Tegu, and ZED. It was discovered that youths also make drugs out of green geisha, chalk dust, sanitizers, and a combination of Orange Crush and Cerevita.  Through its various programs, the church provides guidance and support to young people, helping them develop a sense of purpose, direction, and meaning in their lives. This, in turn, helps reduce the likelihood of drug and substance use. It was concluded that the church provides counseling and support services to young people struggling with addiction through awareness campaigns, workshops, congresses, and meetings among other activities, to promote drug and substance abuse awareness. It was recommended that to increase capacity, the Catholic Church is working towards building partnerships and collaborations with other organisations and stakeholders. 


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The Dyke 17(1) 2023 [On Drugs]