The Multicultural Drug and Alcohol Partnership (MDAP) has warmly welcomed 18 young people of South Sudanese background as new Peer Educators with the partnership.
Recruited by the MDAP Outreach Team, they will engage with their peers, family, and networks about the harms of alcohol and other drugs.
According to Orlando Green, MDAP Clinic and Project Lead, the young people are ‘highly motivated and energised to contribute education, empowerment, and spread Ubuntu to their community’ – Ubuntu is an African concept of togetherness and humanity, along the lines of “I am because we are”.
On a Saturday late April, they gathered at North Richmond Community Health for a workshop run by the MDAP team.
As well as information about drugs and alcohol, the training provided information and advice on emotional regulation and interpersonal effectiveness. The young people in turn raised issues close to their heart around intergenerational conflict and expectations of self and family.
Their first job will be to recruit groups of other young people and/or families and organise meetings to discuss issues related to mental health and drug use. The more awareness there is in the community around the causes and harm of alcohol and other drugs abuse, the better they will be able to support young people and their families through it and connect them with services.
The MDAP is funded by the North Western Melbourne Primary Health Network