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Young people's involvement in a substance misuse communications campaign

Jones, Matthew; Salmon, Debra; Orme, Judy


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Mathew Jones
Professor of Public Health

Debra Salmon

Judy Orme
Professor/Ins Director ISHE


There is growing emphasis in public policy on involving young people in the development of health promotion campaigns and information resources on substance misuse. To date there has been little literature that explores the level and nature young people's involvement in such initiatives. This paper reports on an evaluation of a substance misuse communications campaign that sought to involve young people in the project process and the production of locally focused media products. The findings from this study indicate potential benefits in terms of the production of credible and locally appropriate messages on substance misuse. It also found that there were wider benefits associated with the promotion of young people's citizenship and participation in local service delivery. Young people's involvement needs to be understood as part of a process across a range of different types of activities. Participation by young people vulnerable to substance misuse may contribute to agendas on inclusion and targeted welfare, however it requires a high level of commitment by local agencies and strategic authorities. The key to realizing young people's potential is the use of experienced facilitators, well-informed advisors and dedicated media experts, who can work alongside young people in a range of settings within their communities.


Jones, M., Salmon, D., & Orme, J. (2004). Young people's involvement in a substance misuse communications campaign. Drugs: Education, Prevention, and Policy, 11(5), 391-405.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Oct 1, 2004
Journal Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy
Print ISSN 0968-7637
Publisher Taylor & Francis
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 11
Issue 5
Pages 391-405
Keywords young people, substance misuse, communications campaign
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Additional Information : This paper discusses a DH funded research and development project acknowledged as demonstrating good practice in relation to young people's active participation. Young people involved produced 'Think Before You Drink' - a little book on booze, which won a Nursing Council on Alcohol/Unison prize for practice innovation.