1.0 Chapter One:
Miss use of drug is a major public problem worldwide. It is estimated that 324 million individual globally, age between 15 to 65 years, have used illicit drugs. Many mental health problems such as depression, bipolar disorder, mood and anxiety disorders, antisocial personality disorder, and suicide attempts, are also associated with drug abuse. Prevalence and miss use of drug has increased and experts in the area of drug health have indicated that if the trend of drug abuse is not controlled, the problems might amount serious healthcare trouble. The disadvantage aspect regarding this is teenage children of high schools age are disadvantage of these problems. The phenomenon of substance miss use has been a global problem meeting the ail of government, individual and the societies are generally affected by such problems. Furthermore, in 2003, the West-African nation of Liberia emerged from fourteen years of civil war, which ravaged the country’s economic, health, and education infrastructures. Chronic diseases such as HIV/AIDS, psychological illness, drugs and substance dishevel continue to plague Liberia’s youthful generations, and hinder recovery efforts economically; Liberia remains one of the poorest countries in the world. One strategy to reverse this statistic would be to improve the education and high unemployment rate as regards to Liberia’s youth generation, the majority of which are youths (comprising approximately 65% of Liberia’s population of 4.973,148 million persons).
Youths in sub-Saharan African countries, such as Liberia, share an important bidirectional relationship with the socio-economic forces that impact post-conflict societies; including changes in political institutions, rapidly expanding global networks and the increasing importance placed on school and higher education in workforce and economic development. This underscores the magnitude towards establishing stable school environments and actively engaged youths who are motivated to pursue higher education in post-conflict societies. Although some progress has been made in improving education rates among youths in sub-Saharan Africa more concerning trends towards high-risk behaviors akin as intoxicant and other substance use are additionally on the rise. Abuse of drug and miss use of substance by youths is a significant problem globally. Substance use is associated with increased risk for a number of well-established consequences including impaired peer relationships, mental illness, increased risk for suicide, high-risk sexual behavior, HIV/AIDS, disrupted learning, truancy, increased school drop-out rates, and poverty. Miss use of Substance by school students in many African countries is additionally common and has been associated with similar consequences. Miss use of drug is a phenomenon which has bother and will continue to bother mankind even in generation to come. Government, fervent organization, sociable groups and world bodies that are derail about its alarming and the incriminating involvement it has on individual health status. Miss use of drug worldwide is said prior to have become a major social problems, which affect individuals at every social-economic level as well as individual in age group from the adolescent to the elderly. According to Agwubike (1998) drug are known to be chemical agents that affect living cells; they are used in modern medicine, in treating illness and diseases. Miss use of drug has severe health implication. The health challenges and severity of problems associated with the non-medical use of the drug is incalculable.
1.2 Background Of The Study
The miss use of drug is one of the world’s major public health problems. Statistic from the 2009 National Housing Survey on Drug Abuse of the National Institute on Drug Abuse of the United States reveal that approximately 21.8 million Americans age 12 and above were past-mouth users of illicit drugs, and 22.5 million could be classified with substance dependence or abuse. In addition, 15.4 million individuals were dependent on or abused alcohol and 69.7 million were current smokers (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 210). The cost of drug abuse to society is staggering. Total economic cost of alcohol abuse per year in the United States is listed as $166.5 billion dollars, smoking $157 billion dollars (Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 2004), and illicit drugs $193 billion dollars (National Drug Intelligence Center, 2011). The totals over $500 billion dollars in lost productivity due to illness or death, health care expenditures, motor vehicle crashes, and social welfare, among others (Stein, 2001).
Miss use of psychoactive substance is an outgoing problem awful of public health concern. It is estimated that the average annual retail cost of psychotropic substances in Liberia is more than USD$12,000, while alcohol beverages generate more than USD$20,000 from sales to a consumer population of about 2 to 3.5 million people in Liberia. Previous studies have pointed the alarming incidence of drug abuse among secondary school students as a contributory factor between school administrators and students; parental use of substances has been implicated as a risk factor for drug use by secondary school students. Given the importance of school, and higher education in sowing the seeds of post-conflict recovery; substance use among youths in sub- Saharan countries, such as Liberia, is an important public health problem, and could undermine progress made in these fragile countries emerging from conflict. Furthermore, Liberia is one of several sub-Saharan countries that have become even more fragile in the aftermath of the recent Ebola outbreak, which has put significant strain on the government and healthcare system. Joe bar Community like any other Community in Paynesville City Monsterrado County experiences internal inefficiencies in the school system such as declining academic performance, impassiveness in learning activities and subsequent dropout in schools. The community is located in Paynesville City where commercial activities frequently take place and where students in secondary schools are engage into drug habit. The total population of this community is estimated to be 2500 inhabitants including man, women and children. The fact that there are few studies that have ever sought to address the problem of drug abuse in secondary schools forms justification of the current study that seeks to investigate the effects of drug abuse on academic performance among secondary school students in Joe-bar Community Paynesville City Monsterrado County, Liberia. The substances that will be investigated in this study will include cigarettes, alcohol, marijuana, cocaine and heroin.
1.3 Statement of the Problem:
Miss use of drug is a serious health problem that is horrifying within the Liberian society. In the past few years, the prevalence of trafficking of drug in Liberia was low and abuse was minimal, but today drug is destroying and killing multiple young populate about youthful age within the Liberian sodality. Pupil in high schools within Liberia are not left out of these acts and also the 14 years of bloodily civil conflict in Liberia left the contemporary social problem of youth bulge in the miss use of drug, trafficking and dependence. The problem is rooted from the abuse of children as war machines. Miss use of drug is a global problem that poses a great danger to the lives of individuals, society, political and security in many countrie (United Nation Office on Drug amd Crime, 2008). According to the United Nations statistics (2013), 37,000 people in Africa die annually from diseases associated with drug abuse. The UN estimates that there are 28 million drug users in Africa. An International Conference on drug abuse in Kampala, (2013) reported that young people were the most vulnerable section of the population, especially those in the period of early and late adolescence who are mostly unable to resist peer pressure and start experimenting with drugs in school or outside the school. Between 1990 and 2003, many children were conscripted and regularly drugged to fight wars for various factions. Fighting forces in the multidimensional Liberian civil war were dominantly children forcefully conscripted and drugged to engage into unconventional warfare. This group of civil militias who were later referred to in West African conflict transformation literature as soldiers of fortune are now full-grown men but heavily entrenched into unbreakable drug habit. Consequently, there is a drug demand factor creating a market in Liberia, especially in the face of the country’s current high unemployment rate and general poverty situation, leading to growing number of young people getting involved with unscrupulous means for survival. Despite the overwhelming intervention strategies by the government, non-state actors and many stakeholders to curtail the problem of drugs and substance abuse especially among youth, the number of school going youth who have been involved in drug abuse seems to be escalating day by day. A consistently high rate of riots, violent disturbances in educational institutions have caused a great deal of public concern in Joe-bar community Paynesville City.
1.4 Research Objectives:
The objectives of the study are to;
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- To establish the extent to which parent’s sources of income influence the prevalence of drug and substance abuse among secondary school students in Joe bar Community Paynesville Community Monsterrado County
- To determine how different location of schools influence the prevalence of drug and substance abuse among secondary school students in Joe bar Community Paynesville Community Monsterrado County
- To establish the extent to which school administration influences the prevalence of drug and substance abuse among secondary school students in Joe bar Community Paynesville City Monsterrado County
- To establish how peer pressure influences drug and substance abuse among secondary school students in Joe bar Community Paynesville City Monsterrado County
- To determine measures put into place on how drug and substance abuse can be curtail
1.5 Research Questions:
In order to fulfill the purpose of this research and achieve its ultimate objectives, the following questions will guide the research process
- To what extent do parent’s sources of income influence the prevalence of drug and substance abuse among secondary school students in Joe bar Community Paynesville City Monsterrado County?
- To what extent does location of schools influence the prevalence of drug and substance abuse among secondary school students in Joe bar community Paynesville City Monsterrado County?
- To what extent does school administration influence the prevalence of drug and substance abuse among secondary school students in Joe bar community Paynesville City Monsterrado County?
- How does peer pressure influence the use of drug and substance abuse among secondary school students in Joe bar community Paynesville City Monsterrado County?
- What measures can be put into place to curtail or minimize drug and substance abuse?
The research study assumed that the respondents will be honest, truthful and willing to give correct answers. The researcher also assumed that school principals will allow guidance and counseling teachers and students to participate and give correct information and data during the research process. It is also assumed that drug abuse prevails in one or more other ways in Joe-Bar Community Paynesville City Monsterrado County.
1.7 Significance Of The Study:
The study sought to generate useful data on the effect of drug abuse on the academic performance of students. Therefore, the findings of this study will be useful in several ways: The Ministry of Education (MOE) will use the study findings to find out ways of preventing drug abuse through public enlightened campaigns in schools, promote awareness on the dangers of drugs abuse and how they affect an individual, the family and the society at a larger extent.
The government of Liberia will put in place methods of strengthening the guidance and counseling department in schools through teacher’s service training programs. The findings will be used to advocate for campaigns against substance use should be incorporated in schools with special focus on the adverse consequences of substance use. Furthermore, the society will benefit from the findings of this research project in creating a drug free society for social, economic and political development in line with the sustainable development goals. The school principals will assist the students in identifying the sources of drugs so that they can take remedial measures. The findings will open new research gaps that may be useful for future research initiatives in this area of study by scholars.
Delimitations are the characteristics selected by the researcher to define the boundaries of the study Dusick, (2011). They involve those things the researcher which to include within the study. The study will be carry out in selected private secondary schools in Joe-Bar community Paynesville City, Monsterado County to know the prevalence of drug abuse among secondary student in the community. The study will focus on examining the causes, consequences and nature of drug abuse among secondary students. The substances that will be investigated in this study will include cigarettes, alcohol, marijuana, cocaine and heroin. The respondents or participants will be principals, guidance and counseling teachers and four students from each selected secondary schools in Joe-Bar community Paynesville City, Monsterado County. The study is also delimitated to selected Private school within the Joe-Bar community.
1.9 Limitation Of The Study:
The data collection techniques will be mainly the use of questionnaires which will be used to obtain data from the respondents. Drug and substance abuse is a global phenomenon that requires powerful people in society to fight against such vices. Some participant especially the students will not be able to admit the drug use fearing being exposed to the school administration. Since the questionnaire for the study will not indicate the names of respondents, the researcher will be able to get information freely from the students. School principals might one to withhold information about drug and substance use amongst the students since this will tarnish the schools reputation.