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'It is very hard to come clean in this day and age'

As the world marks Substance Abuse Awareness Day, some patients say they are winning the fight against the disease.

Picture: Supplied

CAPE TOWN - As the world marks Substance Abuse Awareness Day, some patients say they are winning the fight against the disease.

The Western Cape Social Development Departments says that 350,000 patients have been assisted in the Western Cape.

Eyewitness News visited a local substance abuse rehabilitation centre and found out how patients fight the disease one day at the time.

Natalie, who is one of the patients at Ramot, had struggled with alcohol and prescription medication abuse for many years. She says that despite her good upbringing, she became dependent on drugs and was admitted to rehab twice before. The 27-year-old says that this time she is going all in to change her life.

"I was very co-dependent on drugs and alcohol to get through the day. So now I’m here in Ramot to get help, to depend on myself.”

Yazeed, who has been addicted to heroin, says that in the end he chose his family over the drugs. He says people who are addicted to any form of addiction shouldn’t be ashamed to seek help.

"It is hard, it is very hard to come clean in this day and age. They just have to make the decision and stick with it. They can’t do it on their own, they need some sort of treatment. You can go to your nearest clinic.”

The Western Cape Department of Social Development says it has allocated R104 million toward tackling substance abuse in the province.

VIDEO: Substance Abuse Awareness Day