For some drug users in the Philippines, rehab means making coffins

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What drug rehab looks like in the Philippines
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What drug rehab looks like in the Philippines
Drug users make coffins as part of a local government drug rehabilitation program in Olongapo city, northern Philippines, October 5, 2016. Drug users are taught carpentry skills and paid 5,000 Philippine pesos ($103) a month to build wooden coffins as part of the local government's livelihood and rehabilitation programme. The caskets, made of simple plywood and painted white, are provided to the poorest families in the city who are unable to afford funeral services, government officials said. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Former drug dependents undergoing rehabilitation make coffins as part of a local government drug rehabilitation program for people involved with drugs "Shabu" (Meth) in Olongapo city in northern Philippines, October 5, 2016. REUTERS/Erik De Castro
Former drug dependents undergoing rehabilitation make coffins as part of a local government drug rehabilitation program for people involved with drugs "Shabu" (Meth) in Olongapo city in northern Philippines, October 5, 2016. REUTERS/Erik De Castro
Former drug dependents undergoing rehabilitation make coffins as part of a local government drug rehabilitation program for people involved with drugs "Shabu" (Meth) in Olongapo city in northern Philippines, October 5, 2016. REUTERS/Erik De Castro
A former drug dependent undergoing rehabilitation makes coffins as part of a local government drug rehabilitation program for people involved with drugs "Shabu" (Meth) in Olongapo city in northern Philippines, October 5, 2016. REUTERS/Erik De Castro
A drug user with a tattoo that reads: "You'll Never Walk Alone", is seen inside a classroom turned into a makeshift dormitory during a weekend drug rehabilitation program organised by the government of San Fernando, La Union, in northern Philippines, September 24, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. Around 700,000 drug users and pushers registered with authorities in a process termed "surrendering". REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A guard checks on drug users sleeping inside a dormitory hall of Central Luzon Drug Rehabilitation Center in Pampanga province, in northern Philippines, September 30, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Drug users take part in a performance during a ceremony marking the completion of six months drug rehabilitation of 48 patients at Central Luzon Drug Rehabilitation Center in Pampanga province, in northern Philippines, October 11, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Drug users who completed six months drug rehabilitation program receive a statue of Baby Jesus or St Nino at Central Luzon Drug Rehabilitation Center in Pampanga province, in northern Philippines, October 11, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Uniforms of drug users hang outside the isolation building, housing drug dependents at Central Luzon Drug Rehabilitation Center, in Pampanga province, in northern Philippines, October 1, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Drug users exercise at Central Luzon Drug Rehabilitation Center in Pampanga province, in northern Philippines, October 1, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Drug users get computer training as part of a recovery training and livelihood project at Central Luzon Drug Rehabilitation Center in Pampanga province, in northern Philippines, October 6, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A newly-admitted drug user gets his head shaved at Central Luzon Drug Rehabilitation Center in Pampanga province, in northern Philippines, October 11, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A drug user, who took his baby hostage during a visit from his family, sits inside an isolation cell as a punishment for his behaviour at Central Luzon Drug Rehabilitation Center in Pampanga province, in northern Philippines, October 7, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Drug users pray inside a chapel of Central Luzon Drug Rehabilitation Center in Pampanga province, in northern Philippines, October 6, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A dentist prepares to extract a tooth of a drug user at Central Luzon Drug Rehabilitation Center in Pampanga province, in northern Philippines, October 6, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Drug users sleep with their shirts over their heads during siesta at a dormitory for newly-arrived patients at Central Luzon Drug Rehabilitation Center in Pampanga province, in northern Philippines, October 7, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
A female drug user puts the finishing touches on her painting inside a dormitory hall of Central Luzon Drug Rehabilitation Center in Pampanga province, in northern Philippines, September 30, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A portrait of president Rodrigo Duterte hangs in a classroom occupied by drug users during a weekend drug rehabilitation program organised by the government of San Fernando, La Union, in northern Philippines, September 24, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. Around 700,000 drug users and pushers registered with authorities in a process termed "surrendering". REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Drug users who call themselves "Recovering Champions" are hosed with water as part of their weekend drug rehabilitation program organised by the government of San Fernando, La Union, in northern Philippines, September 24, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. Around 700,000 drug users and pushers registered with authorities in a process termed "surrendering". REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY.
Drug users who call themselves "Recovering Champions" crawl on mud as part of their weekend drug rehabilitation program organised by the government of San Fernando, La Union, in northern Philippines, September 24, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. Around 700,000 drug users and pushers registered with authorities in a process termed "surrendering". REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Drug users who call themselves "Recovering Champions" are blindfolded as part of their weekend drug rehabilitation program organised by the government of San Fernando, La Union, in northern Philippines, September 24, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. Around 700,000 drug users and pushers registered with authorities in a process termed "surrendering". REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Drug users who call themselves "Recovering Champions" take a rest inside a classroom turned into a makeshift dormitory during a weekend drug rehabilitation program organised by the government of San Fernando, La Union, in northern Philippines, September 24, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. Around 700,000 drug users and pushers registered with authorities in a process termed "surrendering". REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A drug user holds a Bible before the start of a Yoga session at Center for Christian Recovery, a private drug rehabilitation center, in Antipolo, Rizal, in the Philippines, September 28, 2016. The soaring popularity of methamphetamine - a cheap and highly addictive drug à is overburdening health services and tearing families and communities apart in Southeast Asia, driving many countries to adopt hardline policies to fight the surge in narcotics use. REUTERS/Erik De Castro SEARCH "DRUG REHAB" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
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OLONGAPO, Philippines (Reuters) - Some drug users seeking to avoid becoming a bloody statistic in Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte's crackdown on narcotics, are going into a rehabilitation program that teaches them how to make coffins.

More than 700,000 drug users and pushers have registered with the authorities in a process termed "surrendering", but there are few programs or facilities to help most of them.

SEE ALSO: Florida woman allegedly sent her jailed daughter opioids in the mail

But in Olongapo, a city of 220,000 three hours north of Manila, drug users are taught carpentry skills and paid 5,000 Philippine pesos ($103) a month to build wooden coffins as part of the local government's livelihood and rehabilitation program.

"I knew that if I don't change, I will be in one of those caskets," said a 44-year-old man, who declined to be named, pointing to coffins in a small workshop where nine other former drug users were also working.

Since Duterte was sworn into office on June 30, more than 3,600 people have been killed, mostly alleged drug users and dealers, in police operations and suspected vigilante killings.

At least 400 self-confessed drug users have surrendered to Olongapo police since June and will be included in the coffin building program in the coming months.

The caskets, made of simple plywood and painted white, are provided to the poorest families in the city who are unable to afford funeral services, government officials said.

Filipinos gave Duterte an "excellent" rating for his war on drugs, an opinion poll showed on Friday, but there was an indication of possible unease over the deadly campaign as most respondents said it was important to arrest suspects alive.

Western governments and human rights groups have expressed concern and called for thorough investigations into the killings.

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