World Anti-Drug Day: Colombian officer educates children with graffiti about risk of drug use

The doors and facades in the Bogota slum are decorated with graffiti.

Oscar Gonzalez “Bear” is an Assistant Superintendent from the Anti-Narcotics Directorate of the National Police of Colombia.

He drew the pictures, and children living here would like to follow suit.

(Soundbite, Spanish) Oscar Gonzalez, Anti-Narcotics Officer
“I have painted for 12 years, and suddenly found that graffiti can take another form with purpose and responsibility. I try to involve young people and focus their attention on it, making them realize free time can be used for sports, music and art in an artistically responsible manner.”

On the sideline of fighting drug traffickers, Gonzalez articulates his passion for art with a special intention to educate nearby neighborhoods against drug-related crimes.

(Soundbite, Spanish) Dager, Graffiti Artist
“We are seeing something different in his gray neighborhood. It will win a smile at least. This is more than a reward for us. It is more than receiving a million of pesos. … We paint more for pleasure. It is to influence people who live with us, where we come or go.”

As children learn to spray strokes of faces or other subjects, Gonzalez finds a peaceful way to take care of the citizens for their healthy existence and future development.

(Soundbite, Spanish) Oscar Gonzalez, Anti-Narcotics Officer
“As one saying goes, prevention is the best investment if we all do our bits, not only for police but community, parents, teachers and schools. … Our children are our future. There will be our next president, next mayor, next police, next soldier, next journalist, or next doctor. If we now unite for their welfare, it is very valuable.”

His art work has been adopted as part of the prevention programs widely carried out by the Anti-Narcotics Directorate of the National Police of Colombia.

During the past years, he has traveled throughout the country, visiting the vulnerable and trying to influence children and adolescents in particular with his drawings over the risk of drug use.

Leave a Comment