By Anastasia Bezverkha

A new documentary, Stay Together to Stay Alive, offers a glimpse into the world of harm reduction in Kyrgyzstan. The film focuses on how non-government organisations are ensuring sustainable state funding for harm reduction programmes in the country.

In recent decades, Kyrgyzstan has become known among some activist groups as the “pioneer of harm reduction” in the region. The Kyrgyz government was the first in the Central Asian region to introduce such strategies, including needle syringe programmes (NSPs) and opioid substitution therapy (OST). In an unusually progressive move for the region, the state also provides OST to 450 inmates who use opioids on a daily basis.

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Thumbnail: Flickr CC Needles Harm Reduction Exchange Asia