KwaZulu Natal forms South Africa’s east coast, stretching from Port Edward in the south, to the Mozambique boundary in the north.
From its early days, the province has been the scene of many fierce battles – being the bone of contention between the Zulus and the Voortrekkers, the British Empire and Boer settlers (Anglo-Boer War) and the Zulus and the British Empire. The KwaZulu Natal coast has one of the greatest harbours on the African continent, Durban, which geographically divides the North and South Coasts. Visitors to KwaZulu Natal can either disembark from Durban International Airport or the Durban harbour, or make use of the extensive national road network.
The province has three different geographic areas: the lowland region along the Indian Ocean coast, plains in the central section and two mountainous areas, the Drakensberg Mountains in the west and the Lebombo Mountains in the north. The Tugela River flows west to east across the center of the province.
Average temperatures in the province range from 17°C to 28°C from October to April, and from 11°C to 25°C in the colder months. Annual rainfall is about 690mm, falling throughout the year.
On the east coast of KwaZulu Natal lies the lively and exciting city of Durban, South Africa’s third largest city. Durban Metro is Africa’s ultimate coastal playground in the sun! It is a sophisticated cosmopolitan city of over three million people – a city where east meets west. Durban is Africa’s largest and busiest port and the economic powerhouse of the Zulu Kingdom, boasting investment opportunities around every corner.
Durban is an exciting city in which to play, shop, experience the nightlife and relax. It’s a city in which business and debate issues, which have far-reaching effects, not only in Africa but way beyond its borders, are discussed. The world-class International Convention Centre has hosted an historic line-up of events including conferences of a global scale.
Leisure facilities abound, Durban is filled with tourist attractions. Visit uShaka Marine World, Wilson’s Wharf on the Victoria Embankment and the nearby BAT centre. Enjoy fine and traditional dining, entertainment and shopping in scenic surroundings. Shop till you drop in modern shopping malls. Grey Street and the Warwick Triangle boast vibrant local shops and markets. Beachfront stalls sell traditional arts and crafts. Enjoy the excellent entertainment on offer at the city’s theatres and clubs or take a township tour in a local taxi.
If it’s peace and sheer beauty you are after, make a beeline for one of Durban’s many nature sanctuaries or parks. The Botanical Gardens offers so much more than breathtaking flora and birdlife. Ask about their ‘Music by the Lake’ evenings where you can enjoy wonderful music played by KZN’s Philharmonic Orchestra in wondrous surroundings.
Durban’s beaches are characterised by soft, golden sand, palm trees and the warm waters of the Indian Ocean. The main beaches are shark netted and patrolled from sunrise to sunset by trained lifeguards who have an impressive track record in beach safety. The main beaches also have change and shower facilities as well as an array of fast-food outlets, restaurants and bars. Sail, swim, run, and play tennis or alternatively stroll along or relax on the sun-drenched beaches and watch the world go by.
Kwababa generally focuses on top quality establishments offering accommodation to our clients and subscribers visiting the Kwazulu Natal region. Recently however, I learned first hand from a Cape Town family member, the difficulties in finding adequate and safe accomodation experienced by those who are trying to recover from addiction. I probably would remain oblivious to these facts had it not been for my recent discussion. A close family relative of mine is in recovery after suffering from alcohol and drug addiction for many years. After leaving the sanctity of the treatment centre where he had been staying for 3 months, he now found himself somewhat cautious of re-entering society. Finding safe and comfortable accommodation was a priority for him. After some searching he eventually managed to locate an establishment ideal for sober living Cape Town that was perfect for him.
The recovery from an addiction and the treatment does not stop, aftercare options should be a continual process. Recovery takes place from the initial 4-6 week treatment programme and goes beyond this to last a lifetime. The steps taken after going to treatment are extremely important as this will be the difference in staying clean and sober or relapsing.
The main idea of the aftercare programme is to help prevent a relapse from happening. The actual aftercare treatment can vary and depends on the individual. Everybody who suffers from an addiction needs the extra support in every day circumstances; an aftercare programme can provide this.
The aftercare benefits include:
• The aftercare programme is there to provide support, guidance and counselling. Helping in recovery to prevent any relapses that might occur.
• Provides a support system of individuals who are going through the same problems. Each of these individuals can hold each other accountable and can share their experiences with each other.
• Going to aftercare can give a sense of belonging in a community.
• Those that have been through recovery longer can offer advice and support to those who are in the earlier stages of recovery.
• Many of the aftercare recovery institutions are available all day to those in need. There is also a new way of connection and support using online methods.
Creating the correct aftercare plan needs to be tailored to each person, taking into account where they live, their community and each individuals personal needs. The right plan in place will ensure a successful recovery.
The basic steps that each aftercare programme has:
• A person must be involved in on-going therapy sessions.
• Learn to identify what triggers the need to return to taking drugs or alcohol. The person can then learn how to cope with these issues more successfully.
• Following an aftercare programme can also help the person to cope with stress and handle any cravings that may occur.
• Sometimes there is a relapse, but creating a plan for such occurrences can reduce the risk of a more serious and total relapse.
Aftercare plans can include:
• Weekly group meetings with a therapist. Offering a safe place to share experiences and also to hear others struggling with similar problems. These therapy sessions can help people with addictions realize that they are not alone.
• Individual therapy treatment is also important to focus on specific needs and problems
• Assisted living: Some people who have finished their initial treatment programme might not have a home or job to return to. Some may even feel unprepared to return to the outside world. There are some places available where the person recovering can stay, a home-like environment where there is supervision provided. There are usually therapists or doctors available immediately and support is there at a moment’s notice. Affordable accommodation, providing workshops, important life skills and help in gaining employment are important for a successful transition back into society. Having spent 3 months already in drug rehabilitation centres in Cape Town, my relative was already participating in an aftercare programme.
• It is also important to have a sponsor and to regularly have meetings together.
• Outpatient treatment: This is a centre that provides assistance to those who work or attend school. This option is more for those whose condition has been assessed and are considered stable enough.
• There are also meetings and groups for loved ones and family members. The meetings can offer a safe place to get together and share experiences and to also offer the necessary support.
Addiction recovery is a lifelong commitment and aftercare programmes are very important. The programme offers a way for each individual to achieve sobriety and maintain a clean and healthy lifestyle. The road to recovery is long and requires a lot of hard work, but each day of success is a step closer to a more happy and healthy life.