Macedonia - Grand Opening of
Narconon Balkan in Skopje
One fine day, Ugo Ferrando, President of Narconon Italy, sent out his weekly newsletter. It reached someone in Skopje, Macedonia, who referred him to someone else who expressed an interest in the Narconon® program. This fellow, Borce Mircevski, a police graduate from the Military Academy of Belgrade, was working for the Drug Enforcement Department of the Skopje Police.
Map of Macedonia
Borce receiving the William Benitez Award
at the 22nd Anniversary of Narconon Italy
It didn't take long before Borce went into action. In September 2003 he started delivering drug prevention presentations by himself to many schools in Skopje. In less than two months, Borce had given presentations to over 5000 Macedonian students!
In December 2003, Borce came to the celebration of Narconon Italy's 22nd Anniversary event where he received the William Benitez International Award. In his speech, Borce stated that he wanted to take responsibility for the drug problem not only in Macedona, but throughout all of the Balkan region.
Shortly after returning to his duties on the force, Borce realized that his work was not the best way to solve the drug problem. He decided to resign so he could open a Narconon centre to deliver both drug prevention and rehabilitation services. He also convinced 8 other people to resign from their regular jobs and join him in the most exciting adventure of all--saving lives from drugs!
At the end of March 2004, executives from the Narconon Italy Zonal Office went to Macedonia to help find a suitable place for the centre. It was found in the small village of Konopiste, 15 miles from the Greek border.
On Easter Day (April 11, 2004) Narconon Balkan opened its doors to its first student. In just over a month, they have six students on the program.
Narconon Balkan's course room
The grand opening was covered in newspapers and magazines, with TV interviews and national radio shows. The news spread quickly. Several people have called asking for drug education, offering help, or just congratulating them. There is a desperate need for drug rehab centers in this country and Narconon Balkan is fulfilling that need!