Substance abuse prevention programmes have evolved significantly over the past decades. Over time programmes have shifted their focus from discussing drugs as an integral programme component to other problems that are closely related to substance abuse, but tend to develop at an early age when substance abuse is not yet a problem. Life and family skills programmes which do not explicitly mention substances have recorded some of the most substantial prevention outcomes. One of the most prominent and promising approaches is the Good Behaviour Game. If this programme is well implemented, it has been estimated that it could reduce rates of alcohol use from 20% to 13% and it could cut drug use among boys in half by age 19–21. Additionally, according to research schools should develop supportive, engaging and inclusive cultures, and offer opportunities to participate in school decision-making and extracurricular activities because it creates better outcomes across many domains and it will make it easier for pupils to seek and receive the support they need.
Preventing substance abuse successfully