Presenting author: Voravat Rugvong
Presenting author biography:
I'm one of a few well-educated Thai drug users.
I may be able to work in the Thai Parliament as a policymaker.
The area of my interest are human rights and government policies regarding drug users.
NATIONAL NETWORK STRENGTHENING MODEL DEMONSTRATION: TRANSPARENT MANAGEMENT CAUSE UNITY, SOLIDARITY AND EMPOWER STRONG PARTNERSHIP.
Voravat Rugvong, Prasert Thathong
From the harm reduction working experience for more than 15 years in Thailand. It was found that meaningful participation among drug users is frequently missed in the policy advocacy efforts, due to unity being unclear and not being recognized by consensus within the networks.
Objective: To develop a network management mechanism that enables transparency, wide-accepted and trustful.
Methodology: Thai network of People Who Use Drugs (ThaiNPUD) was established in 2019. The network objectives are to monitor the situation and to push for policies related to the life and quality of life of drug users by drug users. Our first primary task was the development of “The Constitution” of the network to be the main guideline for managing and running the network in consistency with our objectives. The important content of “The Constitution” is that the network is divided into 5 geological zones: Central, North, Northern East, East, and South. There is a mechanism for network management in the form of an Executive Board (EB). The EB is made up of 13-15 people, mostly elected directly by ThaiNPUD members in each zone.
Result: During the operation between January 2022 and September 2022, there were 5 Regional Assembly activities, each region had elected 2 representatives for each region, totaling 10 people. One National Assembly is organized. Representatives are added up with 5 specialists to join the new network Executive Board. They are replacing the expiring EB after their 2-year-term. The first task is to elect and appoint the new ThaiNPUD President.
*ThaiNPUDworksg closely with the IAAP and NAPUD projects to test the network management mechanism. Under the constitution, there are excellent transparency and high participation among committees and members.
Conclusion: Explicit Accountability always brings compelling energy. It also enables unity, solidarity, and power in the national-level drug user network.