Fight the New Drug Schools Campaign Gets Teens Fighting (Porn)!

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SA Schools Tour: 21 August - 12 September 2016

Abrie Lourens sharing his testimony of how God set him free from an addiction to pornOver the last 20 years there has been a great increase in exposure of children to pornography and addiction in schools in South Africa. Research shows that children as young as 10 are being exposed to violent and abusive hard core porn on the internet. Porn is fuelling teenagers’ desires to be sexually active, with many becoming pregnant and dropping out of school. Boys no longer have respect for girls and view them as a sexual objects. This can lead to boys raping girls, even on school premises.

 

Sexual Selfies
The ‘selfie generation’ has become so desensitised to the message of porn, that now children are not only viewing it, they are making their own in the form of taking sexually explicit pictures of themselves and sending it their friends via social media (this has been called ‘sexting’).

Sexting Leads to Suicide
Jesse’s tragic story illustrates how this has become a life or death issue for some teens. Jesse had sent nude pictures of herself to a boyfriend. When they broke up, he sent the pictures to other high school girls. The girls were harassing her, calling her a slut and a whore. She was miserable and depressed, afraid even to go to school. Then Jesse Logan decided to go on a Cincinnati television station to tell her story. Her purpose was simple: “I just want to make sure no one else will have to go through this again.” Two months later, Jessica Logan hanged herself in her bedroom. She was 18.

Fight the New Drug South Africa Launched

In researching the harmful effects of pornography for my book, Porndemic: How the Pornography Plague Affects You and What You Can Do About It, I saw the need for a schools’ presentation that would capture teens’ attention in a creative, interactive, and engaging way. The current Life Orientation Curriculum does not adequately address the issue of pornography addiction. Fight the New Drug USA provided just the right kind of presentation, so I decided to adapt it for schools here in South Africa. Fight the New Drug South Africa was launched at the Porndemic book launch in 2014, and is gaining momentum as we get more invitations to schools and youth groups across the country.We have spoken at 20 schools in various provinces in 2015 and 2016.

porn is like a drugPorn is the New Drug
As most teenagers feel awkward about discussing the subject of pornography in public, Fight the New Drug uses the language of science, multi-media presentations and personal testimonies to present the medical facts on how a pornography addiction is similar to an addiction to drugs in the way it affects the brain and impacts individuals and society. FTND is provoking hundreds of teens and young adults to talk about the issue of pornography addiction, warning them of its dangers and encouraging those who are addicted to get help.

Gospel Opportunities
We also wanted a way of preaching the Gospel in schools that are either reluctant or resistant to explicitly Christian or Gospel-proclaiming presentations.

At all the schools, my husband, Abrie, requests permission to share his testimony of how God set him free from an addiction to porn. Most schools allow him to share his story as part of the presentation, and this gives him an opportunity to explain the Gospel.

At each school we distribute our Fight the New Drug leaflets to each learner as they leave the hall. The leaflet gives a summary of the information presented in the presentation, contact details of counsellors that teens can call for help and also contains a short Gospel explanation. We also donate copies of the Porndemic book to the teachers’ and learners’ libraries.

“For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes…” Romans 1:16

Shocking Sex Ed - Porn Taught as a Healthy Alternative to Sex
At several schools, we have been shocked to learn of what is being taught during Life Orientation classes on sexuality. We have heard from a number of teens that teachers have told them that viewing porn and masturbating is a healthier and safer alternative to engaging in real sexual intercourse. This is concerning, because both porn and masturbation fuel the very lust that leads to immoral and destructive behaviour that is all too prevalent in our country. “Pornography is the theory, rape is the practise,” was the conclusion of the US Attorney General’s Commission on Pornography.

Teachers Requesting Help
The teachers who invite us are usually aware that porn viewing is a huge problem at their school. They are aware of how boys share porn with each other on their smartphones and the impact this has on their attitude towards girls. One teacher told me in an email requesting that we come to their school: “We are fighting the same scourge and are finding kids as young as 14 being addicted to porn.”

“I deleted all the porn off my phone”
As part of his testimony, Abrie challenges those who are addicted to porn to take radical action to break the habit. He tells them that they should break their phone or computer and that if they are not willing to do that, he can come and break it for them! At the second school this year, a group of boys stayed behind after the presentation to ask Abrie questions. One boy said that during the presentation he deleted all the porn off his phone! This was another good opportunity for us to remind them that although deleting porn off your phone is a good start, we must repent of our sin and surrender to the Lord Jesus Christ, to experience lasting freedom.

Lively Debate
At one prestigious boys’ high school, we were given two hour-long sessions with first the grade tens and elevens, and then the matrics. The Question and Answer times were intense and created a stir of lively conversation (almost disruptively) amongst the boys. The stir was largely generated by discussions on the existence of God and how Jesus Christ and His Word are the only perfect standards of real love and morality. We had several good opportunities to reiterate the Gospel and give a defense for the Christian Faith.

Dedicated Christian Teachers Make a Difference
At another boys’ high school, we had been invited to speak to the Christian Group, but when we got there we found out that the whole school was required to attend! We had the freedom to openly preach on the holiness of God and the importance of fleeing from sexual sin. There are several dedicated teachers at the school, to whom we could donate good book and audio-visual resources, and will also be donating resources for their school library.

Making the Most of Every Opportunity
At another high school, Abrie was not permitted to share his testimony. A girl debated with us after the presentation, saying that she believes viewing pornography is healthy! I reminded her how about the degenerative nature of porn addiction (the addict begins to watch more violent and explicit forms in order to get the same high, which can lead him to abuse or rape women and children) and shared the Gospel with her. Afterwards, we went to different groups of teens having their break time, distributed Gospel tracts and shared the Gospel with them.

Christian Schools Are Also Struggling with This Scourge
At a Christian school in Mpumalanga, a boy stayed behind after the presentation to talk to us. He asked for advice on how he can break his addiction and requested prayer. We gently probed to find out what background issues in his life could be making him more susceptible to such as addiction. He shared with us, that his father is a pastor and that he feels too ashamed to talk to him about these struggles. We also carefully explained the Gospel, and urged him to repent, surrender to Jesus and to take radical action. He was grateful for our counsel.

"If the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed..." John 8:36 

Its Free!
We offer these presentations for free as a service to the community. We can bring our own projector and sound system.

Cape Town Availability
We are based in Cape Town, so are available at most times of the year to come to your school or church in the Cape.

Gauteng and KwaZuluNatal Tour
We will be going on tour in August and September. Abrie and I are available for school or church meetings from 21 August to 1 September in Gauteng and from 2 September to 12 September in Pietermaritzburg or Durban.

School Meetings - How You Can Help
Find out the email addresses of Life Orientation teachers at schools in cities in the areas mentioned above and we will send them an Introductory Letter.

Please email me (Taryn): This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 021 – 689 4480 or 072 215 4801 to arrange any meetings, or for any questions you may have.

“Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.” Ephesians 5:11

Taryn Lourens, Fight the New Drug South Africa, www.fighthenewdrug.org.

Christian Action P.O.Box 23632 Claremont 7735 Cape Town South Africa info@christianaction.org.za - 021-689-4481 - www.christianaction.org.za
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