Home
Friday, 21 September 2018
 
 
Main Menu
Home
About Us
Programmes
Services
Speeches and Statements
Events Calender
Documents
Links
Tenders
Database Application Form
Webmail
Where to find us
NISIS
National Integrated ECD Policy
Children Services Directory
Ministerial Review of the White Paper
Nomination Form & NDA Board Advert
Application – PFA Finalisation
PAIA
TORs toreduce Vulnerabilities to HIV and AIDS
Call for Proposal
Vacancies
SASSA-SAPO Review Interpretation and Analysis report
Nomination Form for Recruitment of Board Member: CDA 2017
ICT Strategy
Annual Reports
DSD Login





Lost Password?
No account yet? Register
Minister: Susan Shabangu
Deputy Minister: Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu
Deputy Minister
iconDSD Customer Care Charter iconStudy Report on Children's access to Social Insurance Benefits
NO AMOUNT OF ALCOHOL IS SAFE DURING PREGNANCY, SAYS DEPUTY MINISTER BOGOPANE-ZULU AT 9-9-9 CAMPAIGN IN PHUTHADITJHABA, FREE STATE PROVINCE Print E-mail
Tuesday, 04 September 2018
Phuthaditjhaba, 4 September 2018: No amount of alcohol is a safe amount for women who are pregnant.

This is the key message emphasised by the Deputy Minister of Social Development, Ms Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu as she kick-started the 9-9-9 campaign in Phuthaditjhaba with a nine-minute symbolic activation of the Memeza personal alarm.

Each year, on the ninth day of the ninth month (September), people in South Africa and across the globe mark the International Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Day. The ninth month was chosen to represent the nine months of pregnancy.

The community dialogue held in Phuthaditjhaba is part of the nine awareness campaigns that the Deputy Minister will conduct in nine provinces as build-up activities to the International Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Day on 9 September.

The campaign seeks to educate and create greater public awareness about FASD, a range of disabilities caused by drinking during pregnancy, of which Foetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) is the most severe. Children with this condition are born with characteristic of physical and mental defects, including short stature, and small head and brain. Children with FASD are particularly disadvantaged as they experience learning disabilities, including when they enter Early Childhood Development (ECD).

“FASD is a life time disability that does not have a cure.Through this campaign we are committed to spreading a message about the dangers of drinking alcohol while pregnant. Our greatest challenge is that we are seeing an increase in the number of children with foetal alcohol spectrum disorders across the country”, said the Deputy Minister Bogopane-Zulu.

The campaign is also part of the implementation of the National Drug Master Plan, which calls for the implementation of innovative prevention programmes to achieve the vision of a society free of drug abuse. Currently, the Central Drug Authority (CDA) is in the process of drafting a 5-year National Drug Master Plan (2018-2022) in terms of the Prevention and Treatment for Substance Abuse Act 2008.

The latest global statistics on FASD is a serious cause for concern for South Africa. Out of 187 countries, a global study found that South Africa has the highest prevalence rate of FASD, at 111 per 1,000 people. Despite this concern, a situational and gap analysis study commissioned by UNICEF found that there was limited public awareness amongst professionals and the general public about FASD, making it difficult for early identification and provision of appropriate intervention services for children and persons with FASD.

Phuthaditjhaba has been identified as one of the high risk areas for FASD due to a high concentration of illegal liquor outlets in the area, a factor that local residents blame for the recent surge in underage drinking and teenage pregnancy.

The residents pleaded with the Deputy Minister and the local municipality to intensify life skills and recreational activities to empower young people as alcohol abuse is rife in Phuthaditjhaba.

“There is an area in Phuthaditjhaba called Five Star and that is where our children are sadly drowning their future in alcohol. The owners of this place do not have any regard for the law as they sell liquor to underage children, including children in school uniform”, said a local pastor who pleaded for the Deputy Minister’s intervention.

The Deputy Minister emphasised the importance of family and community support to pregnant women.

“Pregnant women may be using alcohol to cope with life difficulties such as partner violence, depression or poverty. Some may not even be aware that they are pregnant while others underestimate the extent of the damage alcohol, no matter the amount can cause to the foetus. Pregnant women need all the support they can get from their families and communities to ensure a healthy pregnancy”, added Deputy Minister Bogopane-Zulu.

ISSUED BY THE NATIONAL DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

Media inquiries may be forwarded to Ms Lumka Oliphant on 083 484 8067 or This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it