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UNICRI supports Governments in the formulation and implementation of monitoring systems, programmes and policies in the drug sector.

Capacity building through the provision of technical assistance has always been at the core of UNICRI’s programmes. Through the provision of high-level expertise and/or training, UNICRI promotes national self-reliance and the development of institutional capabilities to assist in the creation and implementation of sound strategies and concrete intervention programmes.

This pilot project is centred on the provision of technical assistance to the Calabria Region in Italy for the establishment of a Monitoring Centre with the purpose of providing a more efficient and effective monitoring of the implementation of the Regional Antidrug Plan for the period 2011-2014. The project will build capacity to assess the prevalence and incidence of drug addiction and to develop, implement and evaluate drug prevention, treatment and recovery programmes.

Although the main geographical focus of the programme is the Calabria Region, this project can provide a unique opportunity to create a model of intervention to ensure an effective, comprehensive and balanced response to the current and emerging problems and harms related to illegal drug demand and trafficking. While its ultimate goal is to strengthen the overall governance of drug control in the Region of Calabria, this project can be seen as a “hub of ideas” not only to assess and monitor the drug phenomenon, but also to test more effective and evidence-based addiction policies and tools to forecast future scenarios in other countries and regions.

In this regard, UNICRI’s technical assistance will provide the possibility of integrating national and international efforts in the identification and application of good practices and seek their adaptability to different national contexts, such as the Mediterranean Basin and West and East Africa. Due to the recent increase in drug use and trafficking, these regions are in need of knowledge and practical guidance about drug policies and programmes, and may greatly benefit from the results of this UNICRI project.

Bibliography on drug addiction

Among the activities aimed to provide technical assistance in Building Capacity to Promote Human Rights and Improve Access to Services, UNICRI has developed a database including relevant bibliographical references from the international scientific literature in the field of drug use and abuse.