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Working with young People who use Drugs and Alcohol (RCLDS)

Thursday March 9, 2023, 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Course Overview

Young people use substances for a variety of reasons, but many of these can often get missed when faced with presenting health concerns and problematic behaviours. Sometimes we don’t stop to ask ‘why is this young person using?’ and ‘what are they getting from substances that they aren’t getting elsewhere?’

This training focuses on the functions of Youth AOD use and explores the underlying needs that are being met by AOD use in young people. While it is valuable and important to understand the primary risks to our young people’s health and wellbeing, we also want to know what is positive in their experience. Does using make them feel more confident? Calmer? Do they feel that they can manage their emotions and mental health better? Understanding the varying reasons why young people choose to use, allows us to understand what alternatives could be explored in place of substance use.

We will also be covering harm minimisation and how to work with young people that are ambivalent about changing their use. Can we still promote change talk if the young people are denying there is an issue? How can we still be effective as workers if the young person is choosing to use it regardless of what we say? All of this will be covered in this session.


Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course, you will have an:

  • Understanding of the principles of Youth AOD use
  • Understanding the Functions of Youth AOD use
  • Understanding the fundamentals of harm minimisation
  • Gaining skills in how to have useful conversations with young people about AOD
  • Grasp of basic AOD information including substance info, drug categories, withdrawal, dependence, and treatment options.


Trainer Bio: Michael Cameron

Michael is a Trainer and Facilitator with the Centre for Excellence in Child and Family Welfare, specialising in the diverse ways in which we can understand and support young people. Michael’s passions include Trauma, Dual Diagnosis, Child Protection, Youth Justice and exploring therapeutic approaches to youth work. Michael has worked across a variety of programs supporting young people including Child Protection Residential Care, Youth Drug and Alcohol Withdrawal and Rehabilitation, Headspace and AOD Community.

He is currently the Youth Principal AOD Practitioner at Secure Care and is also a Senior Trainer/ Practice Consultant at the Youth Support and Advocacy Service. Michael holds Post Graduate qualifications in Adolescent Health and Wellbeing at the University of Melbourne, a Forensic Clinical Drug and Alcohol Assessor Accreditation with DFFH and a Diploma in Youth Work.





Thursday March 9, 2023
1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Event Category:

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