Everyone can benefit from drug education, and it significantly helps the community. Communities that know how drugs impact the body, the long-term and short-term effects of substance use, and the risk factors involved, are more likely to incorporate effective prevention strategies within the community. In addition, they are more likely to help people struggling with addiction and support those in recovery with long-term recovery resources.
What Is Community Drug Education?
Community drug education is a general term, and it may incorporate many areas of education and prevention. It may include:
- Research and development
- Preventative treatment programs
- Early childhood or in-school education
- Recovery resources
Each of these may play a role in community drug education development. Early childhood or in-school education, recovery resources, and treatment programs are some of the most common options in most communities. Community drug education is delivered in many different forms within communities and may include:
COMMUNITY CLASSES & TRAINING
RESEARCH PAPERS & INFOGRAPHICS
EMPLOYEE ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS
HOSPITAL AND CLINICAL TRAINING
WELLNESS & RECOVERY COACHING
COMMUNITY MEETINGS OR TOWN HALLS
Drug education informs community members where illicit drugs could be widely available. In addition, it tells communities how these substances impact individuals, families, and the communities they live within. Finally, it provides solutions for what communities can do to manage these problems, help people addicted to drugs, and support those in recovery.
How Local Outreach Programs Help
Local outreach programs focus on the local community. These programs are vitally important to help prevent kids, teens, and young adults from using drugs.
Young adults who grow up in communities that use science-based approaches to prevention are more likely to have abstained from drugs or alcohol and violence. The Communities That Care prevention system was evaluated, a program that incorporated varying degrees of drug prevention and education into different communities. The local outreach programs accomplished the following:
It increased the likelihood of sustained abstinence from gateway drug use by 49%.
It reduced antisocial behavior by 18%.
It reduced the lifetime incidence of violence by 11%.
Helping People Struggling with Addiction
Community drug education can help initiate treatment intervention and has often allowed many people to access drug rehab programs. In addition, it provides excellent recovery resources. It also reduces the potential for relapse because it helps to increase awareness of risky people, places, and situations. Overall, it provides safe and healthy resources that promote healthy living, whether an individual is in recovery, attending drug rehab, or is an active community member. These programs also show what resources are missing in affected communities where people are struggling with addiction.