New approach to youth work

A TARGETED approach to youth work is the aim of a new resource manual which aims to educate teenagers in the midlands about drug and alcohol related issues.

A TARGETED approach to youth work is the aim of a new resource manual which aims to educate teenagers in the midlands about drug and alcohol related issues.

Developed by Foroige, the‘It’s up to You’ training and resource pack will be delivered in Laois, Offaly, Longford and Westmeath by volunteers who have completed drug awareness training. The initiative aims to support volunteers to plan, implement and evaluate an eight week drug and alcohol awareness programme with young people in clubs and projects.

It includes a drug and alcohol quiz, attitude exercises, risks and effects of substance abuse, drug dilemmas and scenarios, activities on decision making and influences, identifying risk and safety issues, and lifestyle choices.

The focus is strictly on youth work as a preventative factor, and this is to be welcomed. Previous research has suggested that ‘experts’ warning young people of the dangers of drug use is something that has proven ineffective in changing behaviour.

“Drug education is about clarifying information, dispelling myths, challenging attitudes and providing factual information relevant to the age, developmental stage, gender and culture of the young people in the group.