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‘Tis the season for a Safer Summer Era

Posted on 19th December 2023

Youth Solutions campaign supports safer celebrating this season

The end of year is fast approaching and the festive season is here. As we hit closer to Christmas, New Year and end of year celebrations, youth drug and alcohol prevention and health promotion charity, Youth Solutions, is ramping up its summer campaign to encourage young people to celebrate safely.

The Safer Summer Era campaign launched last month, aiming to make safety around summer’s celebratory gatherings and activities a priority, through some planning ahead, practical advice and better decision-making.

Youth Solutions Chief Executive Officer Geraldine Deans said the campaign was about supporting young people to enjoy their summer and reduce potential risks from alcohol and drug-related harm. Reflecting on research and practice, Mrs Deans said the campaign addressed the reality that alcohol remains one of the drugs causing most harm to populations worldwide, noting the peak celebration season was an optimum time to focus on sharing strategies for reducing harm and risky drinking.

“Safer Summer Era aims to provide practical tips that young people can consider and employ to help reduce their risk of harm and increase safe behaviours this celebration season,” Mrs Dean said.

“The more that we can do as a community, to support safer celebrating practices and to really normalise reducing alcohol consumption and increase safe behaviours, the better the results will be, not just for the wellbeing, health and safety for our young people, but for the community as a whole. Like many parents, teachers, carers, and supporters of young people; we too want everyone to have a great time this summer, but we want them to do it in a safe way. This campaign is just one of the ways Youth Solutions shares health literacy information and connections to support, to achieve that.”

Youth Solutions staff and volunteers at a community outreach stall.

The Safer Summer Era “slay safe” toolkit has been released as part of the campaign, offering simple but effective tips and advice to ensure safer partying, celebrations and activities. The toolkit includes practical tips for planning ahead, ensuring a safe way home and limiting alcohol harm, through to the steps and importance of calling for help in a drug or alcohol emergency.

This year, the Safer Summer Era campaign has been strengthened thanks to a kind donation from the Hunt Family Community Foundation, established by the family of the late Harry Hunt OAM, including longtime Youth Solutions supporter Sue-Lei Hunt Mingay. The foundation aims to support valuable community projects and initiatives, to continue Harry’s legacy as a champion supporter of the South West Sydney community.

Youth Solutions Manager Marketing & Engagement, Amanda Dillon, is heading up the campaign and reflected on the impact Hunt Family Community Foundation’s donation has had.

“The success of any health promotion marketing campaign is a multifaceted approach, with a strong focus on connection to community. The resources we’re distributing and the impact we can have with this campaign is not possible without community support. We are incredibly grateful to the Hunt Family Community Foundation for its donation in support of this campaign; which is truly helping us to have a meaningful and greater impact.”

Get involved:

December’s top tips:

  • Night out? Start with a plan. Arrange a safe way home, stay together with your friends, look out for one another and always have a trusted person you can call if you get stuck
  • If you decided to drink alcohol, alternate each drink with a glass of water to help avoid feeling unwell. Eating a good meal also helps to slow the absorption of alcohol
  • Remember, mixing alcohol with other drugs can be dangerous and potentially fatal
  • Festival and concert-goers are reminded to pack the essentials: water, sunscreen/hat, charged phone and card/cash. Pick a meet-up spot and know where volunteer and medical help spots are located
  • If a friend has a bad reaction to drugs, alcohol or too much time in the summer sun, remain calm and call for help. Always call Triple Zero (000) for an ambulance if someone passes out and you are unable to wake them. It could save their life. Ambos are only concerned with keeping everyone safe and providing life-saving care; it’s so important to tell them if the person had alcohol or drugs so they can provide that care.
  • View the full Safer Summer Era toolkit here – including our checklist for planning your road trip or holiday, supporting your friends this summer and more safety hacks
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