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GRADE – A (Get Real About Drugs Education in Aberdeen)
Grade A (Get Real About Drugs Education, Aberdeen) was created in August 2010 as a sub-group of the Youth Council. Their initial aim was to complete a local drugs investigation to discover young people's views on drugs, and then present the results at the 2010 National Discussion Day. During the process of making questionnaires for the investigation, Grade A had the guidance of Drugs Action and learned about the physical and emotional effects of taking different drugs. More than anything, Drugs Action wanted to change the way Grade A thought about drugs users and break away from stereotypes.
After the National Discussion Day, most members wanted to continue the group and looked into new projects. During these discussions, two members of the group (Barry Black and Josh Cowe) felt that they could not commit to the group and (regretfully) left. Looking through possible projects, the group decided on becoming a peer education group.
From the outset, the group knew they wanted to create a drugs education programme that had an impartial approach. Most schools in Aberdeen held the "zero tolerance" approach to drugs. However, the group didn't believe this was productive in keeping people safe or solving the drugs problem. There was no programme that simply gave all the facts and allowed people to make their own choices without influence or prejudice. Grade A were going to make that programme. Battling through many challenges, Grade A devised a drugs education programme consisting of three sessions, 'What is a Drug?', 'Stereotypes' and 'Harm Reduction.'
At the moment, Grade A are completing the toolkits for these sessions, and are preparing to launch their new app and logo in early 2013. Additionally, the group took part in the 'Take One Action' project, which consisted of presenting a world issue video to a group of young people.
The group meet every Tuesday at 6pm, in Skills Bank, 78 Spring Garden, Aberdeen, AB25 1GN.
Grade A are always looking to recruit new members, and if anybody is interested, contact the group at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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