Prevention Update

A unique update on what is happening in the world of drug abuse prevention.

Welcome to Prevention Update, the Prevention Hub's comment on latest news, research, statistics, policy updates, information on resources and events. It is relevant in particular to practitioners and policy makers but equally valuable and interesting to all who form the drug prevention community.

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The World Drug Day, 26 June 2017

26 June is #WorldDrugDay!

The theme of the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking is “Listen First - Listening to children and youth is the first step to help them grow healthy and safe”. All of us can play a part in protecting youth from dangerous substances - lets #ListenFirst & support evidence-based prevention!

To observe and support the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, please visit the campaign page at It provides materials for dufferent target audiences, as well as multi-media materials and materials for social media, that can be used to disseminate wider messages on the im[portance of evidence based prevention. We also would also like to invite you to support our Thunderclap Campaign for the international day:

To draw attention to the World drug Day, the UN Secretary General calls attention to how last year, at the UN General Assembly Special Session on the World Drug Problem (UNGASS), the international community took steps to mobilize a multifaceted, collective response to the full range of issues related to drug abuse and illicit trafficking. He states: "Governments came together to chart a new path forward that is more effective and humane, and leaves no one behind. UNGASS was a ground-breaking moment that provided a detailed and forward-looking blueprint for action. Together, we must honour the unanimous commitments made to reduce drug abuse, illicit trafficking and the harm that drugs cause, and to ensure that our approach promotes equality, human rights, sustainable development, and greater peace and security."

This year the World Drug Day reminds us of the importance of listening to the needs of children and youth, and also of listening to this international commitment and to the science on what is effective for addressing substance use and supporting the healthy and safe development of children and youth. It builds on an ongoing advocacy campaign 'Listen First', that aims to increase support for prevention of drug use that is based on science and is thus an effective investment in the well-being of children and youth, their families and their communities.

Complex Connections: Intimate Partner Violence and Women's Substance Abuse and Recovery - a webinar

Relationships Matter! is a webinar series focusing on women's behavioral health and exploring the role of relationships in the lives of women experiencing mental health and substance use issues, by developed by SAMHSA (U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration). This five-part series provides research, best practice, and critical thinking about topics professionals need to know when working with women as well as better understanding the pitfalls, promise, and power of relationships in women and girls’ mental health and substance use services.

The Relationships Matter! series aims to:
•Help practitioners who serve women with behavioral health problems understand and address the impacts that relationships have on women's treatment and recovery
•Present relationship-specific interventions and approaches that work with women
•Offer practical hands-on tools that a wide variety of practitioners may use to support women’s recovery

The next webinar will introduce connections among Intimate partner violence (IPV), women's substance abuse and recovery on 1st August.

Intimate partner violence (IPV) and women's substance abuse are often intertwined. Some women turn to substances to cope with the trauma of IPV, and others are coerced into using substances by an abusive partner. High rates of substance abuse among women seeking domestic violence (DV) services, along with high rates of IPV among women seeking substance abuse treatment, underscore the need for an integrated approach. However, DV programs are often unprepared to support women around substance abuse, just as behavioral health providers are often unprepared to identify and respond to IPV. This webinar focuses on ways behavioral health and DV service providers can work together to address the complex range of issues women face in trying to find safety, access recovery services, and heal from the trauma of IPV.

Topics will include:
•Coercion and women's alcohol and drug use and abuse
•Screening and engagement regarding personal safety, IPV, and substance abuse
•Considerations in treatment planning
•Effective strategies and evidence-based practices for supporting women experiencing both IPV and substance abuse

This event will take place Tuesday, August 1, 2:00-3:30 p.m. EST in the U.S.A.. Please confirm your local time. If you are interested in previous webinars in the series, please follow the SAMHSA Women, Children and Families Training and Technical Assistance website.

Roundtable Discussion on Prevention in Low Resource Settings

The International School Health Network (ISHN) together with the FRESH Partnership will host a round table discussion summarizing what we know about substance abuse prevention in low resource countries.

Following up on an earlier webinar on what the research and practice says about effective SA prevention programs, this open round table discussion will gather and summarize what practices can be more effective in low resource contexts. Several experts will be asked to comment on the statements derived from a review of research, reports and resources to publish a policy/program summary. Participants will also consider next steps in launching a series of webinars on different aspects of SA prevention in all contexts. All participants will be asked to participate in the discussion, so please ensure that your computer is equipped with a microphone.

The discussion will be lead by the below experts;
º Wadih Maalouf Programme Coordinator, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
º Yongfeng Liu, Senior Advisor, UNESCO
º Isidore Obot, Director, Centre for Research and Information on Substance Abuse (CRISA), Uyo, Nigeria (TBC)
º Other Invited Experts

This event will be on 13 July 14:00, London in UK. Please confirm your local time. To access the webinar on the day, this Participants Link will be active about 15 minutes before the start of webinar.

This webinar series on Low Resource Countries/School Health & Nutrition programs is being organized by members of the FRESH Partnership, including Save the Children, Partnership for Child Development, the UNESCO HIV Clearinghouse, the International School Health Network and others. The series is also being supported by the development of a corresponding series of Wikipedia style summaries, an extensive Bibliography/Toolbox and other online resources.

European Masters in Drug and Alcohol Studies (deadline 30 June)

European Masters in Drug and Alcohol Studies - A multi-disciplinary perspective to afford the clinical practice and research complexity

The deadline of the registration period of the third edition of the European Master of Alcohol and Drugs Studies (EMDAS) is approaching (30 June).

This Master is designed to stimulate reflection and debate on crucial topics in substance use and misuse from a multi-disciplinary, European and cross-national perspective. It is run jointly by four universities: Universidad Miguel Hernandez de Elche (Alicante, Spain), Aarhus University (Denmark), Middlesex Univerisity (London, UK) and Università del Piemonte Orientale (Novara, Italy).

Students will have access to a group of European teachers and students and opportunities to study in partner universities or undertake placements in Europe. The Master is meant to provide students with knowledge and skills useful to investigate and analyse the psychological, social and health implications arising from alcohol and drug consumption. It also provides the possible responses to problems and offers the tools they need to face clinical practice and prevention challenges.  

Parenting for Lifelong Health (PLH) programme manuals for violence and injury prevention

The Parenting for Lifelong Health (PLH) teen and child manuals are now available:   The Parenting for Lifelong Health is a suite of parenting programmes for preventing child maltreatment and promoting the well-being of children and parents in particular in low-resource settings. They are: “PLH for Babies”; “PLH for Toddlers”; “PLH for Young Children”, and “PLH for Adolescents”.   The Parenting for Lifelong Health has been developed through a collaboration between WHO, Stellenbosch University and the University of Cape Town in South Africa, Bangor University in Wales, the universities of Oxford and Reading in England, and UNICEF. The programmes have been tested for effectiveness in low-resource settings with non-professional facilitators. Potential users are strongly encouraged to implement them with properly trained and supported facilitators.

UNODC releases the World Drug Report (WDR) 2017

The 2017 World Drug Report provides a global overview of the supply and demand of drugs and substances as well as their impact on health.

In 2015 about a quarter of a billion people used drugs. Of these, around 29.5 million people - or 0.6 per cent of the global adult population - were engaged in problematic use and suffered from drug use disorders, including dependence. Opioids were the most harmful drug type and accounted for 70 per cent of the negative health impact associated with drug use disorders worldwide, according to the latest World Drug Report, released by UNODC.

Disorders related to the use of amphetamines also account for a considerable share of the global burden of disease. And while the market for new psychoactive substances (NPS) is still relatively small, users are unaware of the content and dosage of psychoactive substances in some NPS. This potentially exposes users to additional serious health risks.

This year marks 20 years of the World Drug Report, which comes at a time when the international community has decided to move forward with joint action. UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov highlighted that the outcome document of the 2016 landmark UN General Assembly special session on the world drug problem contains more than 100 concrete recommendations to reduce demand and supply, however he acknowledges that more needs to be done. "There is much work to be done to confront the many harms inflicted by drugs to health, development, peace and security, in all regions of the world," said Mr. Fedotov.

The 2017 World Drug Report provides a global overview of the supply and demand of opiates, cocaine, cannabis, amphetamine-type stimulants and new psychoactive substances (NPS), as well as their impact on health. It highlights the scientific evidence for hepatitis C causing greatest harm among people who use drugs; and brings into view further diversification of the thriving drug market, as well as changing business models for drug trafficking and organized crime.

Prevention of Drug Use and Treatment of Drug Use Disorders in Rural Settings

Substance abuse has long been perceived to be a problem of the inner city. Only little data is available regarding the misuse of substances in rural areas, but the available evidence is showing the severity of the prevalence of rural drug use across countries.

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) published an guide on addressing substance use in rural settings, aiming to raise awareness and offer guidance for policy makers, public health officials, local authorities and other stakeholders. This Guide describes possible ways for policymakers to address rural substance use and to support prevention and treatment in rural settings. The evidence clearly points to significant disparities in socioeconomic challenges, health-care access and healthcare funding in rural areas worldwide. This evidence also confirms concerns regarding the level of substance use in rural areas, the substantial negative impact on the lives of individuals, families and communities suffering from substance use disorders, and the negative health and social consequences that threaten the viability and future of rural communities.

On a more positive note, effective evidence-based substance use prevention, treatment and recovery strategies can be readily adapted to the cultural needs of rural settings, thereby reducing the impact on and negative consequences for rural residents. Not only is it possible to address substance use problems in a cost-effective manner and reduce the disparate burden it inflicts on rural communities, it is the right thing to do.

However, addressing substance use in the rural communities that have limited resources can be especially hard. This guide aims to offer guidance for recoqnising the special barriers faced by the rural communities, as well as the unique strengths and resources they may posses, for building comprehensive, evidence based, effective and sustainable drug demand reduction interventions and policies in and for rural settings.


58th Annual Institute on Addiction Studies (Canada)

The Annual Institute on Addiction Studies offers professional development and learning opportunities to those working and involved in substance use and related fields in Canada. All workshops and presentations attended at the Annual Institute on Addiction Studies conference are preapproved for core Continuing Education Units (CEUs) through the Canadian Addiction Counsellors Certification Federation (CACCF).

For more information visit

2nd World Conference of ICUDDR

The Second Annual ICUDDR Conference will be held in Prague, June 20-21, 2017 with pre-conference events and workshops on 19 June, 2017. The International Consortium of Universities for Drug Demand Reduction(ICUDDR) was founded in April 2016, sought greater collaboration through the forum that convened to discuss how to best adopt the Universal Treatment Curriculum(UTC) and Universal Prevention Curriculum(UPC) for university settings with the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs(INL) and a panel of 20 university representatives from 12 countries in Honolulu, Hawaii. This Consortium is pursuing the following 5 goals and objectives; 1. Promote Education and Training in the Field of Substance Use Prevention and Treatment 2. Advance Applied Addictions-Related Treatment and Prevention Research 3. Credentialing Professionals in the Workforce 4. Support University Networking and Coordination Worldwide 5. Facilitate Enhanced Multidisciplinary Integration in the Applied Addiction Fields

The Second Annual ICUDDR Conference of ICUDDR will be a preeminent conference for communicating directly on substance use university education, training, research, international collaboration and networking, and substance use professionals. If you are interested in this meeting, please do not miss the early bird registration until May 31, 2017! For more information and registration see

World No Tobacco Day

The Theme of World No Tobacco day, 31 May, is "Tobacco - a threat for development". It proposes measures that the public and governments should take to promote health and development by confronting the global tobacco crisis.

To take part and to find out the video, poster, and social media materials, go to the campaign site at

Tobacco threatens us all. Say no to tobacco. Protect health, reduce poverty and promote development. #NoTobacco


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