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RESPONSE Introduction Wrexham Response is a new and dynamic partnership between Wrexham Youth Service, N.H.S. Trust and CAIS Ltd. The partnership was formed in late 2001 in order to respond holistically to the needs of young people who use/misuse substances in Wrexham County Borough. Through this partnership we aim to deliver a continuum of care for young people which includes, outreach harm reduction work, treatment, support, housing and education and prevention. Work in Progress Wrexham Youth Service input into the partnership is aimed specifically at helping communities find solutions to their own problems and in empowering young people to resist the use of substances or in the case of young people who already use substances, to find healthier more productive alternatives. As a team Wrexham Response operates an open access drop in facility aimed specifically at young people who use substances on three mornings per week. This drop-in operates from the team’s town centre based premises and is open from 9.30 to 12.30 Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Wrexham Youth Service Response has also entered into further partnerships with the Communities First areas of, Caia Parc, Plas Madoc, Cefn Mawr, Southsea and Brynteg and have also included in this partnership the Community of Offa which in it’s geographical area covers the larger part of Wrexham Town Centre. Early intervention outreach work is carried out in all of these communities and involves trained workers from Wrexham Youth Service Response and staff from community organisations working together to make contact with hard to reach groups of young people. One of the more innovative approaches adopted by the outreach workers is the utilisation of a discrete Needle/Syringe exchange which will shortly be available in the Caia Parc area. In addition to the work in the community we are also involved in one to one work with young people in order to help them to help themselves to come to terms with their substance use. This involves a close working arrangement with the Community Drug and Alcohol Teams, Young Peoples Worker. Wrexham Youth Service Response accepts referrals from a variety of sources including self-referrals from young people. Wrexham Youth Service Response recognises that substance use/misuse can have a negative effect, not only on those who use substances but also on those around them. To this end we work closely with the carers and families of young people who use substances. Wrexham Youth Service Response believes in the necessity of good quality education/prevention work and is at present involved in work with all of the secondary school’s and youth groups within the County Borough through the work of the INFORM Project. As part of Wrexham Youth Service Response, INFORM is also involved with actively supporting a Peer Education Project who meet weekly and have already delivered workshops to other young people. Inform has also been actively involved in the running of smoking cessation workshops, working within Wrexham’s secondary schools Wrexham Youth Service Response recognises that trends within young people’s substance use changes rapidly. We therefore, aim to maintain our flexibility and effectiveness with the needs of young people firmly in mind. To this end Wrexham Youth Service Response has initiated work in a variety of settings and with a variety of agencies and services these include; Plas Madoc Youth Partnership. Hurst Newton/Foyer. Social Services Teams Children Looked After Team Schools. Youth Offending Service. Caia Parc Partnership. CAIS Ltd CDAT. Brynteg Partnership. North Wales Probation Service. YOI Stoke Heath. YOI Thorn Cross. Offa Community Council. Cefn Youth Project. Right 2 Respect. Barnadoes Compass. NACRO. Educational Social Workers. Bangor Bail Hostel. Clwyd Alyn Housing Association. To date referrals have been accepted from all of the above and work has taken place to support young people with a variety of substance misuse related problems. Within the overarching remit of Wrexham Youth Service Response, other dynamic approaches to the work have been initiated to provide education, support and diversion to specific groups of young people. These approaches include the, Sirens Project - The work of the SIRENS project is aimed directly at raising the awareness of Young Women in relation to the so-called “Date Rape Drug” Rohypnol. Information sessions are now taking place within youth centres and projects within the geographical area of the County Borough. No Going Back Project-Young People leaving custody are referred to the No Going Back Programme which, is a partnership initiative involving Wrexham Youth Service Response and the Young Offenders Institutes at Thorn Cross and Stoke Heath. Young People are referred to the programme ten weeks prior to release and an assessment is carried out at the YOI by staff of Wrexham Youth Service Response to ascertain the needs of Young People upon release. (Copy of “No Going Back” working document enclosed) Right Start Project- The aim of this project is to offer quality leisure activities for young people actively engaged with Wrexham Youth Service Response. These activities are seen as therapeutic interventions that will form part of our work with young people. A report on these projects is included as an appendix. Training- In addition to the previously mentioned work, Wrexham Youth Service Response has striven to develop and deliver a range of Substance Misuse Education and Training packages aimed at a diverse audience. This educational element of the work has seen staff from Response delivering the first year modules of the BSc in Substance Use Studies at NEWI. We have also been involved in the training of teachers during INSET training days and the delivery of a range of training to Community Councils and Tenants and Residents Associations. Training has also been delivered to other professionals including staff at the Maelor Children’s Centre, SOVA and Women’s Aid. Work has also been initiated with groups in both Caia Parc and Offa with the aim of developing local solutions to local problems through the medium of Substance Misuse Training.
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