Pubdate: Fri, 28 Sep 2001
Source: Daily Press, The (CN ON)
Copyright: 2001 Daily Press (CN ON)
Bookmark: (Youth)


Staying connected with life: that's the goal and motto for Youth Against 
Drug Abuse (YADA).

The groups goal is to decrease drug abuse and its harmful effects by 
helping youth make healthy choices and stay connected with life.

I'm really against drugs, said YADA member Cora-Lee Morin. You lose out on 
the natural high and joys of life. You don't see the world in the right 
perspective, but with a dazed mind.

Morin is one member of a core group of 12 Timmins teens supported by seven 
agencies concerned with the well being of youth.

Youth need to know theres other youth who want to try to help them and that 
there are other things to do in the community, said YADA member Tanya 

YADA arose from the Timmins Youth Needs Assessment (TYNA) project. The 
project began with an intensive survey of Timmins youth on a variety of 
topics in 1998. Among other things, the youth who took part in the survey 
answered questions about their attitudes and experiences regarding 
substance abuse.

The survey found 41.4 per cent of the respondents had used drugs. The 
number provincially is 36 per cent. Seventy-nine per cent of local 
respondents admitted to using alcohol, compared to 67.5 provincially.

Six recommendations were made.

After a public presentation a number of organizations stepped forward to 
form the TYNA sub-committee on substance abuse.

They all said they believed that youth centered strategies are the best way 
of creating healthy youth communities, TYNA co-ordinator Athena Brown said. 
A lot of information supports that. Youth knows what works and what doesn't 
for their own community.

TYNA recruited interested teens and after reviewing the survey information 
with the committee, researched the problem with a university student as 

The committee looked at what other communities in the province have done 
and what strategies might work in Timmins.

Brown admitted it will take a collaborative effort from many groups and 
individuals in the community to implement YADAs plans.

The sub-committee and YADA are in the midst of recruiting community stake 
holders we hope will buy into the plans, she said.

Community support will indicate which plans go through first. Weve got big 
plans in the works, but well do what we can now with the idea of building 
on it year to year.

The first step was an information booth at the Welcome to Timmins night and 
the design of a pamphlet.

The group will begin fund-raising efforts to produce the pamphlet as they 
await stakeholders response to participation in larger initiatives, which 
are being kept secret until support develops.
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