20 March 2006

Japanese Schoolchildren Raise Money to Support United Nations Drug Control Efforts

VIENNA, 20 March (UN Information Service) -- Six Japanese schoolchildren on Monday presented a donation of around US$ 150,000 to the Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Antonio Maria Costa. The money will be used to help raise awareness of the dangers of drug abuse in developing countries.

The "Young Civic Ambassadors", aged from 14 to 17, represent the Tokyo-based Drug Abuse Prevention Center (DAPC), which has raised more than US$ 4 million for UNODC over the last 12 years.

"There is important symbolism in the work of these young people, who are working to help other less fortunate young people around the world," Mr. Costa said. "I am very impressed by their innovative work and by their spontaneity and imagination."

The money raised by DAPC has so far been used to support around 250 NGOs in some 90 developing countries. "This collaboration provides an excellent example of an NGO helping other NGOs, of young people taking an active part in a very important collective effort," Mr. Costa added.

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For information contact:

Richard Murphy
Chief, Advocacy Section, UNODC
Telephone: +43 1 260 60 5761
E-mail: richard.murphy@unodc.org