Not only is Afghanistan a center of opium production, it has one of the world’s most serious drug addiction problems. An estimated 1 million Afghans, out of a total population of 28 million, are battling substance abuse. For some, the Wadan Drug Rehabilitation Center in Kabul offers the last chance to kick a drug habit.
Costing about a dollar a day to support a habit, poppy-related products are relatively affordable for Afghans. Many smoke the drug, although some women put it into tea as a way to combat depression or sickness. Addiction is a particular problem for the chronically unemployed.
The Wadan facility is one of only three rehab centers in Kabul. It uses a four-part program lasting 45 days, with out-patient follow-up available after that. Religion is one of the four elements in the program, along with education, physical activity and family therapy.
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Monique Jaques is a freelance photojournalist working in Turkey and Afghanistan.