“Let’s Talk About Drugs” National Youth Media Awards Organisers Urge Young People to Get Involved

(No Repro Fee - PIC: Joe Keogh) Pictured at the launch of the ‘Lets Talk about Drugs’ Media Awards opened by Miriam O'Callaghan in the Department of Education Clock Tower Building, Dublin was: Miriam O'Callaghan with 2014 Best Film (12-14 yr olds) Category winners, Blaze Youth Club, Caltragh. (LR) (Front) Darragh Conlon (Blaze Youth Club), Alice Smith (Blaze Youth Club), Miriam O'Callaghan, Kyle Smith (Blaze Youth Club), Odhran Mahon (Blaze Youth Club). (Back row) Tafadzwa Moswa (Rapper), Mabel Chah (Singer) Sinead Dolan (Filmmaker). Drug use among Irish youth is above the EU average and Ireland now has the 5th highest rate of drug-related deaths among under 25’s in the EU. The Drugs.ie 'Let's Talk about Drugs' National Youth Media Awards encourages discussion of drug and alcohol-related issues by inviting young people to produce a piece of original content relating to drug and/or alcohol use. The competition is supported by The HSE National Social Inclusion Office; The Drug Policy Unit in the Department of Health; Healthy Ireland and Cosc - The National Office for the Prevention of Domestic, Sexual and Gender-based Violence in the Department of Justice and Equality. Closing date for entries is Friday the 22nd January 2016. The overall prize is €2000 and the winners’ work will be published on the Drugs.ie website. All age category winners also receive an iPad Mini and a certificate. Full details and entry forms are available on drugs.ie/awards.

(Photo: Joe Keogh) Pictured at the launch of the ‘Lets Talk about Drugs’ Media Awards opened by Miriam O’Callaghan in the Department of Education Clock Tower Building, Dublin was: Miriam O’Callaghan with 2014 Best Film (12-14 yr olds) Category winners, Blaze Youth Club, Caltragh. (LR) (Front) Darragh Conlon (Blaze Youth Club), Alice Smith (Blaze Youth Club), Miriam O’Callaghan, Kyle Smith (Blaze Youth Club), Odhran Mahon (Blaze Youth Club). (Back row) Tafadzwa Moswa (Rapper), Mabel Chah (Singer) Sinead Dolan (Filmmaker).

Final Call for Entries for “Let’s Talk About Drugs” National Youth Media Awards With Prize of over €2,000

Drug-abuse affects all sections of society, including the LGBT community. Now the organisers behind a national awards initiative to raise awareness of drug and alcohol issues, are urging all young people to take up the opportunity to research the issues involved, particularly in light of recent tragedies that have made front-page news.

National_Youth_Media_Awards_2016-EXTENDED-DEADLINEThe Ana Liffey Drug Project is urging young people to examine the issues around drug and alcohol use, so that they can make informed decisions. The call came as the organisation highlighted the final call for entries for this year’s “Let’s Talk About Drugs” National Youth Media Awards, with the rapidly-approaching deadline of Thursday March 31.

The awards aim to prompt conversation, among those between the ages of 12 and 25 years, on the themes of the hidden harms of alcohol use and the effects of drug use. The awards get hundreds of applicants every year, and are supported by the Health Service Executive, the Department of Health, Healthy Ireland and COSC – the National Office for the Prevention of Domestic, Social and Gender-based Violence.

As part of the awards, young people are encouraged to undertake their own investigation of drug-related issues, and to produce a video or animation, an audio recording, a news article, or a poster. There are four age categories: 12-14 years, 15-17 years, 18-21 years, and 22 – 25 years, with the winning category entrants awarded an iPad Mini, and showcasing of their entry at a prestigious awards event in Dublin on May 11. The overall winner will receive a prize of €2,000.

Tony Duffin, Director of the Ana Liffey Drug Project told us:

“We have seen all too frequently in recent media headlines the cost of drug and alcohol misuse. There is little point in telling people, particularly young people, what to do on these issues. The ‘Just Say No’ approach simply doesn’t work. What we can do is support young people to inform themselves about the issues, through evidence-based information, and to make informed decisions about how they want to deal with that information.”

“With the upcoming closing date of March 31, there are just weeks to go for people to enter this year’s event. I believe that this is a really valuable opportunity for young people across the country to get stuck into the issues involved, in a way that is original and creative. We want entrants to engage meaningfully with this year’s topics, which are ‘What are the effects of drug use?’ and ‘What are the hidden harms of alcohol use?’. We then want to read, hear and see that story told in a way that captures the imagination of their peers.”

The closing date for the Awards is 5pm, Thursday 31 March, 2016.

For more information visit www.drugs.ie/awards.

Drugs.ie is an independent website funded by the Health Service Executive (HSE) and managed by the Ana Liffey Drug Project. It has in excess of 150,000 unique visitors from Ireland and over 500,000 international visitors each year. The Drugs.ie “Let’s Talk About Drugs” National Youth Media Awards is co-funded by the HSE.

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