Former Eldos drug user opens up about losing her kids and getting clean

Eldorado Park community activist Dereleen James, and Gauteng Social Development's Mbangwa Xaba joined host Gugulethu Mhlungu for a conversation about how communities can deal with substance abuse and drug dens.

Elsie is a resident of Eldorado Park and has been using drugs for twenty years. She relates how she used to have sex with various men just to get her quick fix and eventually lost her children when they were removed from her care.

She explains that soon after she lost her children, she was placed in a women's centre, where stayed for about eleven months. She says she has been off drugs for a year and seven months and although she is jobless she is working hard to get her life back on track.

I see my children on weekends. I'm only allowed to see them on weekends.

Elsie, Eldorado Park resident

James says the one thing she has been highlighting over the years is that drug users are willing to get help, but are often faced with a conundrum. What will happen to them as soon as they leave rehabilitation centres and facilities, and are at risk of returning to using illegal substances?

When fighting substance abuse, you need a holistic approach, and unemployment plays a huge role in people relapsing, explains James.

We need assistance and support from government in the form of job creation within your community. Eldorado Park has a high percentage of unemployment. It is unemployment, it is poverty, there is a sense of hopelessness in the community.

Dereleen James a community Activist in Eldorado Park

Xaba tells Mhlungu that government runs a number of programmes aimed at assisting rehabilitated drug users. He adds that there are two centres in Tshwane and Sedibeng, with an additional centre being built in Johannesburg.

Listen to the full conversation in the audio clip below:


This article first appeared on 702 : Former Eldos drug user opens up about losing her kids and getting clean


CapeTalk welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the CapeTalk community a safe and welcoming space for all.

CapeTalk reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

CapeTalk is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
NGOs peg child murders in W Cape at 66 this year alone

NGOs peg child murders in W Cape at 66 this year alone

CapeTalk and 702 anchor, Eusebius McKaiser tries to get the bottom of the scourge of child abuse, neglect and killings in the WC.

Meds aren't only way to treat kids with ADHD, psychiatrist explains

Meds aren't only way to treat kids with ADHD, psychiatrist explains

A mental wellness expert explains what ADHD is and how families, parents and teachers can better equip themselves to help kids.

Philippi residents live in fear after 11 people killed

Philippi residents live in fear after 11 people killed

CapeTalk's Pippa Hudson speaks to EWN reporter Kevin Brandt about the spate of killings which took place over the weekend.

Technobyte:  Kwesé Play streaming box includes Netflix for Africa

Technobyte: Kwesé Play streaming box includes Netflix for Africa

Kwesé Play streaming box reviewed, Boeing want aviation innovators and could your future medication be printed using a 3D printer?

Human trafficking: The life of drugs and prostitution - Grizelda Grootboom

Human trafficking: The life of drugs and prostitution - Grizelda Grootboom

The author of Exit, Grizelda Grootboom, explains how she was trafficked, drugged and sold for sex on the streets of Joburg.

City of Tshwane launches Hopeline to assist drug users

City of Tshwane launches Hopeline to assist drug users

Executive Mayor of Tshwane's spokesperson Samkelo Mgobozi outlines how the Hopeline call centre which will work with 23 NPOs.

I cannot be an absent father, an absent husband - Mthembu

I cannot be an absent father, an absent husband - Mthembu

ANC Chief Whip Jackson Mthembu shares some of his regrets and why he is considering retiring from politics.

Female pilots inspiring youth to dream of careers in the cockpit

Female pilots inspiring youth to dream of careers in the cockpit

Two airline pilots shared their unconventional journeys to the cockpit and discussed barriers to entry in the aviation industry.

John Maytham's Books: Drugs, blackmail, theories on genocide...and an Irish tale

John Maytham's Books: Drugs, blackmail, theories on genocide...and an Irish tale

Take a listen to John's three book picks for the week.

John Maytham's book review: Missing girls, drugs, madness and mythomania

John Maytham's book review: Missing girls, drugs, madness and mythomania

Listen to John's book picks for the week and add to your reading list.

The world’s richest doctor (worth R150bn) was born and raised in South Africa

The world’s richest doctor (worth R150bn) was born and raised in South Africa

Patrick Soon-Shiong, son of Chinese immigrants to SA, is the world’s richest doctor and the wealthiest resident of Los Angeles.

Popular articles
Van Damme: De Lille has until Monday to respond to maladministration claims

Van Damme: De Lille has until Monday to respond to maladministration claims

The DA has suspended Patricia de Lille from party activities but Eusebius McKaiser says its statement 'is clear as mud'.

LISTEN: Father of drowned toddler speaks of dangers and heartbreak

LISTEN: Father of drowned toddler speaks of dangers and heartbreak

Connor Weber, fell unnoticed into a bin of water and drowned.

Fund manager lays criminal charges against former Steinhoff CEO Markus Jooste

Fund manager lays criminal charges against former Steinhoff CEO Markus Jooste

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Benguela Global Fund Managers Chief Investment Officer Zwelakhe Mnguni.

The Steinhoff Story: from humble beginnings to billions

The Steinhoff Story: from humble beginnings to billions

Financial Mail editor Rob Rose chats to Eusebius McKaiser about how Steinhoff became the retail giant we know, before the fall.

Zuma order to pay costs of failed legal suit, a damning indictment: Law expert

Zuma order to pay costs of failed legal suit, a damning indictment: Law expert

Law professor at Wits says the President has now been warned to consider his options very careful when playing delaying tactics.

Predictably awesome new Nando's ad reminds South Africans ‘we can fix our sh$t’

Predictably awesome new Nando's ad reminds South Africans ‘we can fix our sh$t’

Watch the Guptas pack their bags and run in Nando's inspiring new advertisement.

How businessman Max Lichaba struck gold with his jewellery company

How businessman Max Lichaba struck gold with his jewellery company

Entrepreneur Max Lichaba built his own empire and is the CEO of Lichaba Creations and several other businesses. This is his story.