Term 2 2018 Parents
Positive Choices Issue #12: Keeping you up-to-date with evidence-based drug prevention.
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The aim of this e-newsletter is to provide our subscribers with information about new research findings and drug prevention resources, and to share relevant news, conferences and events.
Thank you for subscribing to the Positive Choices newsletter, and welcome to our Term 2 issue for 2018.
In this issue, we focus on alcohol and showcase Positive Choices resources to help you get the facts and protect your children from alcohol-related harms. We are also pleased to announce:
 Please help us spread the word by forwarding this newsletter to other parents in your networks, and encourage them to subscribe at www.positivechoices.org.au. 
Alcohol is the most commonly used drug in Australia, and is associated with significant risk of harm, such as physical injury, violence and problems with school. Alcohol use typically begins in adolescence, which can be particularly risky. Young people have less tolerance to the effects of alcohol, and young brains are still developing during adolescence, making them more susceptible to harm from alcohol.
Given how easy it can be for teenagers to get alcohol, it is important to talk to teenagers and educate them about alcohol early. Luckily, Positive Choices has a range of resources to help you pass on the facts and help keep your kids safe.

You might want to start by brushing up on the facts about alcohol, or making sure your teen is informed. Our Alcohol factsheet is a good place to start.

It's also important to know how alcohol use can affect the developing teenage brain. You can watch a great summary in this 5-minute video.

For your teenager, tools like the recently added Standard Drink Calculator are a great way for them to learn how to monitor their alcohol consumption if they will be drinking. Even if they're not at a drinking age at the moment, it's a good idea to educate them early on this topic. Information and safe consumption guidelines often talk quantity in standard drinks, and many teenagers may equate one standard drink with one glass of alcohol. Learning that this is not the case, however, will help prepare them for when they may start drinking, and help them to take care of their friends. The Standard Drink Calculator on Positive Choices is an interactive game, where students attempt to pour a single standard drink in a range of glass types, so it's more engaging than trying to learn from a standard drink chart.

Now you've got some of the facts about teenage alcohol use, you probably want to know what you can do, as a parent, to help protect your child from alcohol-related harms.
Parenting Strategies have compiled the Parenting Guidelines for Adolescent Alcohol Use, which cover so many topics, such as modelling responsible attitudes towards alcohol, establishing family rules and how to help your child deal with peer influence, just to name a few. This is a must-read if you want some guidelines about parenting to protect against alcohol-related harm.

If you want some practical advice and the answers to common parenting questions, from an expert in the field, watch Professor Steve Allsop's webinar on How to Talk with Teenagers About Alcohol Use. In just an hour you'll get to hear important advice to help you feel better prepared to handle a conversation about alcohol with your teenager.

There are so many more resources on Postive Choices to help you tackle the alcohol issue and keep your kids safe. Check them out now.

Positive Choices is pleased to announce...
Paul Dillon will be presenting as part of the Positive Choices webinar series on the 3rd October 2018. Paul will be speaking about teenage parties and schoolies/leavers week, and how parents can manage these situations and help to keep their children safe.
It's sure to be an unmissable webinar. Make sure to check your emails in the coming weeks to register for this event!
Paul Dillon has been working in the area of drug education for the past 25 years. Through his own business, Drug and Alcohol Research and Training Australia (DARTA) he gives regular updates on current drug trends to a range of organisations. He has also worked with many school communities to ensure that they have access to good quality information and best practice drug education. With a broad knowledge of a range of content areas, Paul is regarded as a key social commentator, with interviews on television programs such as Sunrise, TODAY and The Project.

Check out our other webinars on demand here.

Recently added: two new educational games

Two new games have recently been added to the Positive Choices portal.
The first is an interactive quiz that tests users knowledge on a range of drug and alcohol-related questions. Faster responses score highly, but three incorrect answers and you're out!
The second educational game is a standard drink pouring test. Users choose from a range of different serving glasses, different types of alcohol and different strengths. They then need to pour one standard drink.

Take the quiz.
Use the standard drink pouring tool.

Positive Choices is pleased to announce the winner of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Story-telling competition! Drum roll please...
Congratulations to:

Emily (14 years old from TAS) - first prize (receives a MacBook Air)
Emily wrote a beautiful story about the cultural strengths of her community, how the elders teach the young people about cultural practices, such as making shell necklaces and that she enjoys participating in this. Emily’s story was about how she is looking forward to sharing her culture with younger people when she is older. Read Emily's story here.

Jacob (14 years old from NSW) - runner-up (receives $500 JB
HI FI voucher)
Jacob shared how he looks up to Ricky, an Aboriginal Year 12 student in his school who is strong in culture and teaches other students about Aboriginal culture. Jacob’s story was about how he wants to be like Ricky when he is in Year 12. Read Jacob's story here.

Clair (13 years old from NSW) - runner-up (receives $500 JB
HI FI voucher)
Clair’s story was about the positive choices she made in choosing schools. Because of a hard time at her current school, she wanted to move school. She made the positive choice to discuss this plan with her mother who was supportive of her. But in the
end a kind act from her friends helped her make the positive choice to stay at her current school, with all her friends. Read Clair's story here.

Thank you to our three judges, Sam, Rachael and Simon. These wonderful judges were incredibly impressed by all the entries and genuinely wanted to reward everyone who submitted. There was an overwhelming response and it was a joy to see all the positive stories. You are all winners! Everyone who submitted a complete entry will receive a goodie bag from Positive Choices.

Thank you to those subscribers who helped by passing on the competition details to young people they know.
Above: Emily's "Stringing Culture" acrylic on watercolour paper artwork.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation (ADF) is developing a series of toolkits to guide Local Drug Action Teams (LDATs) in the delivery of their projects.

LDATs are encouraged to consider these toolkits when developing their Community Action Plan, and use the evidence-informed approaches outlined in these toolkits to plan, deliver and evaluate their projects.

These resources are open to anyone, not just LDATs, and community members are encouraged to take a look.

The ADF has put together a series of accompanying webinars, which can be accessed for free by anyone here. Once the live time has passed, the webinars can be accessed within the relevant modules on demand here.

The webinars will cover the following topics:

  1. Providing peer support
  2. Mentoring
  3. Positive parenting for early childhood
  4. Education in schools
  5. Alcohol and pregnancy.
New mobile app from Cracks in the Ice

Access trusted, evidence-based information about crystal methamphetamine (ice) for the Australian community via the new Cracks in the Ice app. The app has targeted resources for health professionals, schools, community groups, family members and friends of someone using ice. Download it today and see for yourself!

Download from iTunes.
Download from Google Play.
Listen to the Positive Choices team present, or catch up with us at our booth/display, at these upcoming events.
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