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Researching Youth Substance Use and Harm Reduction Services: A Winning CES Partnership

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Title: Researching Youth Substance Use and Harm Reduction Services: A Winning CES Partnership
Author: Morton, Mavis; MacDiarmid, Laura; Hotchkiss, Lauren; Grills, Taylor; Van Every, Keith; Crowder, Adrienne; Kuczynska, Joanna
Abstract: Throughout 2016/17, the Wellington-Guelph Drug Strategy (WGDS) is conducting a project to advocate for harm reduction resources for local youth who are at risk or struggling with substance abuse and related issues. By partnering with Dr. Mavis Morton’s Principal and Practices of Community Engaged Scholarship course, the WGDS Youth Harm Reduction Working Group was able to acquire current and relevant evidence-based research to support this project. The research effectively responded to gaps in information about the needs and issues facing Wellington County rural youth. We designed and carried out research with local experts and synthesizing previous academic and community-based knowledge. Results of interviews with 13 Wellington County professionals, and a review of peer-reviewed research, community based reports, relevant websites, and networks identified the need for local and accessible supports and services, the importance of positive relationship building with youth, the value of youth-inspired and youth-lead activities and evidence-based information about ways to decrease risk and increase resilience. Finally, current research about the benefits and challenges of using a harm reduction approach was identified. In addition to learning about the needs and ways to support rural youth facing substance abuse issues, we learned about the benefits of practicing CES principles. Our new CUP-modelled principles aligned with successful and sustainable partnerships including resource and knowledge sharing, respect, trust, and ongoing communication.
Description: Poster was part of 'What We Know' display, held on March 1, 2017 at the Quebec Street Mall in Downtown Guelph. At 'What We Know,' the Community Engaged Scholarship Institute brought together 50 posters featuring diverse research on Guelph and Wellington from community organizations, municipal staff, faculty and students. Topics included feral cats, farmland loss, food waste, the wellbeing of children and more - all specific to Guelph and Wellington.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10214/10263
Date: 2017-03-01


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