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Green Crescent Addiction Prevention Practitioner Training Program was held for Country Green Crescents!

The International Federation of Green Crescent hosted an online training session regarding the Green Crescent Addiction Prevention Practitioner Training Program for Country Green Crescents from July 24-26. Expert volunteers from 19 countries, including Austria, Azerbaijan, Botswana, Palestine, Gambia, South Africa, Kyrgyzstan, TRNC, North Macedonia, Malaysia, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Rwanda, Serbia, Somalia, Tanzania, Greece and Zimbabwe, participated in the training program. By the end of the program, 50 participants earned certification as Green Crescent Addiction Prevention Training Program practitioners.

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Although alcohol addiction is a disease that affects individuals from all walks of life and is influenced by a combination of psychological, genetic, and behavioral factors that cannot be attributed to a single cause, its negative consequences can be mitigated with early diagnosis and treatment. In the prevention of alcohol addiction, a combination of the individual's own will, family support, and professional help is crucial. Recognizing the addiction, seeking help, and starting treatment early are important steps for the individual's health and quality of life. The International Federation of Green Crescent and Country Green Crescents worldwide conduct global efforts with preventive measures regarding alcohol addiction.

3 Million Deaths Annually

Also known as alcoholism, alcohol addiction is a serious and growing public health issue defined as a mental condition characterized by the desire to consume alcohol, accompanied by the development of tolerance and withdrawal symptoms due to alcohol use, negatively impacting the individual's life. According to the World Health Organization's (WHO) latest "Global Status Report on Alcohol and Health," alcohol consumption is estimated to cause approximately 3 million deaths annually. Alcohol addiction can manifest in various ways, with the severity depending on how often and for how long an individual has been drinking and the amount consumed. Some individuals with alcohol addiction may drink heavily throughout the day, while others may remain sober at times.


Due to the neurochemical changes it induces in the brain structure, alcohol addiction significantly limits an individual's control over their actions. The severity of the disease varies based on the frequency and duration of alcohol consumption. Green Crescents affiliated with the International Federation of Green Crescent collaborate with healthcare professionals, educators and local leaders in preventing alcohol addiction, aiming for lasting societal change through education programs and awareness campaigns, sharing a common mission to prevent the negative effects of alcohol addiction.

What Are the Symptoms of Alcohol Addiction?

Distinguishing alcohol addiction from occasional alcohol consumption can be challenging since alcohol is widely accepted and consumed in many cultures. Symptoms of alcohol addiction include:

Development of Tolerance: The need for increasing amounts of alcohol to maintain the same effect.

Withdrawal Symptoms: Mental and physical distress resulting from reducing or quitting alcohol use, alleviated by resuming alcohol consumption.

Loss of Control: Exceeding planned amounts of alcohol use.

Time and Energy Expenditure: Excessive time and energy spent on obtaining, using, or recovering from alcohol effects.

Social and Occupational Issues: Decreased or complete abandonment of significant social and professional activities due to alcohol use.

Failed Attempts: Unsuccessful attempts to control or quit alcohol use.

Conscious Harmful Alcohol Use: Continuing alcohol consumption despite awareness of its harmful effects.

Recognizing early warning signs is crucial, considering the worsening trend of alcohol addiction over time. Early diagnosis and treatment can help individuals avoid negative consequences. If you know someone struggling with alcohol addiction, providing support is essential. Avoiding shame or guilt can help reduce the individual's resistance to seeking help.

What Are the Effects of Alcohol Addiction?

Alcohol addiction causes physical and psychological damage by affecting different parts of the central nervous system. Some effects include:

• Esophageal, laryngeal, gastric, and pancreatic cancers.

• Impaired brain functions such as thinking, decision-making, and movement.

• Sleep disorders, headaches, eye damage.

• Heart and circulatory diseases.

• Impaired blood clotting.

• Severe liver damage.

What Can Be Done for the Treatment of Alcohol Addiction?

Acknowledging alcohol misuse or the development of alcohol addiction can take time due to alcohol's social nature as a psychoactive substance. Many individuals continue social alcohol use while developing alcohol addiction. Those using alcohol and seeking treatment, along with their families, can seek treatment from addiction treatment centers and psychiatric clinics associated with hospitals. Treatment should be tailored to the individual's needs, with the main goal being sobriety, requiring long-term follow-up after treatment.

Differential diagnosis and treatment of accompanying psychiatric disorders are crucial. Long-term follow-up after treatment is necessary, as relapses often occur within the first 6 months. The family of individuals with alcohol addiction plays a significant role in the addiction treatment. If the individual continues drinking, the spouse stating that they cannot stay with them as long as they continue may be a sufficient reason for the individuals with alcohol addiction to attempt quitting alcohol. If the individual refuses to undergo an original treatment program for alcoholism, the relationship between the doctor and the individual with alcohol addiction should not be severed, and a psychosocial crisis where the individual accepts treatment should be awaited.

What Should Be Done?

Some considerations for the relatives of a substance-using person include:

• Helping the individual with alcohol addiction see the consequences of their behavior.

• Showing genuine interest and remembering that alcohol problems are an illness.

• Acquiring knowledge about addiction treatment methods.

• Being prepared for the individual with alcohol addiction to accept help.

• Pre-arranging with the treatment center for necessary organization.

• Recognizing early warning signs, considering the worsening trend of addiction over time.

How Does the Green Crescent Counseling Center (YEDAM) Support Alcohol Addiction?

The Green Crescent Counseling Center (YEDAM) is a service provided by the Turkish Green Crescent Society for individuals aged 12 and above with substance addiction, offering completely free outpatient psychosocial support. Upon applying to the center, an individual undergoes an assessment interview with a specialist psychologist, and a treatment plan is collaboratively created. This program covers intervention in addiction, prevention of relapse, intervention in accompanying mental disorders, and support in areas such as family relationships and lifestyle. Meetings with a social worker provide support in education, employment, life skills, relationships with friends, coping with activities and surroundings, and obtaining the correct medical support for the individual.

More Latest News


The International Federation of Green Crescent recently held its inaugural webinar, titled "The Art of Fundraising," as part of its Capacity Building Program. This initiative aims to help Country Green Crescents more effectively access international and regional funding sources. The webinar, held on December 21, 2023, brought together 55 representatives from 24 countries and featured insights from five distinguished speakers across two sessions. The first session, "Fundraising Strategies and Opportunities for NGOs", included presentations by Matej Kosir from UTRIP and Jan Peloza from Impact Hub. The second session, "Empowering Fundraising Capacity in NGOs," featured a presentation by Dr. Mohammed Tariq Sonnan from UNODC. This was followed by exchanging experience from Dr. Ahmed Fairuz Bin Mohamed, President of Green Crescent Malaysia; Dr. Tajudeen Abiola, Secretary General of Green Crescent Nigeria; and Dr. Mousa Daoud, President of Green Crescent Jordan. In a poignant moment during the program, we honored Dr. Omar Farwana, President of Green Crescent Palestine, who tragically lost his life along with his family during the Gaza attacks on October 15. A commemoration speech and a short film were presented in his memory. The International Federation of Green Crescent will continue its webinar series under the Capacity Building Program, aiming to guide and support Country Green Crescents in effectively utilizing international and regional funding sources and enhancing their overall capacities.

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