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Adele Searll (1944 - 1998)

The Order of the Baobab in

Adele Searll (1944 - 1998) Awarded for:
Outstanding achievement in campaigning against drugs and for the establishment of drug-counselling centres.

Profile of Adele Searll

Adele Searll, born in Cape Town on 25 September 1944, was a passionate anti-drug campaigner whose work included the founding of the Cape Town Drug-counselling Centre. She was involved with this organization for more than a decade of its history.

A growing drug problem in the Western Cape meant that the outpatient departments at hospitals and welfare agencies were flooded with addicts and their families seeking help. In 1983, Adele joined a group of doctors and other professionals in forming the Drug Action Committee to raise funds to open a drug-counselling service.

In February 1985, the Drug-counselling Centre was opened. Adele Searie remained involved as a committee member, fundraiser, and for a term, as Chairperson until 1996. Facing ongoing financial problems, Adele ensured that the Centre survived a climate in which many other NGOs fold due to the harsh financial climate. She saw the Centre develop from a small counselling service to a three-level intervention programme, offering solutions to the drug problem in the areas of treatment, training and prevention.