Drugs and Alcohol

Jacqui, Jason and Paul work for Connected at MYPAS. Their job is to undertake a range of different activities across Midlothian designed to support young people (12-18) to address any problems that they are having with their substance use.

So, substance misuse, what’s that then?

We know that lots of young people use drugs and alcohol every now and again and that most of this time this is all under control and not really causing much more than a sore head and a few regrets in the morning. Sometimes though, drinking or taking drugs can lead to some bigger problems and that’s what we’re here to help with.

What sort of problems do you mean?

There’s lots of ways that drugs and alcohol can cause problems. This could be that you find that you’re spending too much money on them, that you’re getting into trouble with the police after drinking or that you’re just using out of habit now and not getting the fun out of it that you used to. Whatever’s going on for you around drink or drugs, if you want to make some changes then get in touch.

What can you offer for young people?

If you’re aged 12-18 and think that you might have a problem with drugs or alcohol, we can arrange to meet up with you to look at how you’re doing just now and how you want things to be different. We can then keep talking on a regular basis and support you to make the changes that you want to make.

If you’re not sure if you have a problem or not, we’d still happily meet up with you, have a chat about the sort of things we can offer and then you can decide from there if you want to keep seeing us or not.

We won’t judge you because of what you’re using or how often. We won’t just try and make you stop using drugs or alcohol. We will work with you to get your drug or alcohol use back into the place that you want it to be.

What can you offer for parents?

If you are a parent of a 12-18 years old and are concerned about your child’s substance use, we would be happy to meet with you to discuss a way forward. This could include things like basic information on the positive and negative effects of the substance they’re using and looking at talking to your child about drugs or alcohol in ways that work.

MYPAS does not have to be working with your child to be able to offer this sevice.

What can you offer for other workers?

Whether you work with young people or drug and alcohol users, we are hoping that the new Practitioners’ Forum that we’re setting up will be of use. As the expert local service specifically on young people and problem substance use, we will be offering free training days on a regular basis to keep you up to date with emerging trends, effective approaches and ideas to include in your own work. To sign up to the network and hear about upcoming events, contact us.

What else will you do?

Another major part of the work will be getting out and working with groups of young people. Every year we decide on the groups of young people that we really want to work with and then go out and look to identify the partners we’ll need to do the work well. This means we can better understand where young people are at, what they think about drugs and alcohol and how these issues affect their lives while also giving good quality, useful information at the same time

How do I get in contact with you?

Contact Paul, our Team Leader, and he will either get back to you or pass your details onto another member of the team.

You can email him on paul@mypas.co.uk or call him on 0131 454 0757

Do you have any useful links that I can use?

www.talktofrank.com - Information on drugs and where to get support

www.drugscope.org.uk/wip/24/index.htm - Designed for 11-14 year olds

www.bbc.co.uk/radio1/onelife/health/index.shtml?drugs#topics - Lots more info on drugs and alcohol