Here we’re using the word ‘drugs’ to include alcohol.Where there is a PDF image there is a downloadable Adobe PDF file. Click to get Adobe Reader

According to drinkaware.co.uk, the amount of young people drinking alcohol has fallen dramatically in recent years. In 2001, around 52% of 15 year-olds reported having drunk alcohol in the last week. By 2014 it was just 18%. The website also reported that:

In 2016, over two-fifths (44%) aged 11-15 in England had drunk alcohol at least once (46% of girls and 43% of boys).2

The proportion of pupils who have ever had an alcoholic drink was found to increase with age from 15% of 11 year olds to 73% of 15 year-olds

In 2015, 28% of 13 year old pupils and 66% of 15 year old pupils in Scotland reported ever having had an alcoholic drink – the lowest rate since the survey began in 1990.4


Some facts and figures about alcohol in the UK (includes 2014 and 2003 figures)


 Quiz about drugs, alcohol and cigarettes (updated Oct 2017)


 Facts re. young people – smoking, drinking, drugs (updated Oct 2017)

A drugs game

What you need is some large pieces of paper and some marker pens. Get the young people into groups. Go round each group and give them a specific drug on a piece of paper (eg. heroin, cannabis, speed). Make sure no other groups know what drug they have. Get them to draw what that they think a drug user taking that drug would look like.

Finally, get all groups to come back into one large group with everyone in. One by one they present their piece of paper with their drug using character to the rest of the group. The group have to guess what drug each small group has been given by looking at the picture drawn

A drugs exercise

1. Write down or draw how drugs affect the life of a drug user. Maybe have a picture of a ‘drug user’ ready or get them to draw it

2. Secondly, draw or write down how it affects other people close to the drug user.

3. What impact does it have on the emergency services and other professionals?

4. Finally, how does it affect people in society?

Drug myths

Get the young people to draw pictures of stereotypical drug users and the drug that they think the person would use..

1. Student
2. Hippy
3. Posh person
4. Someone in a poor estate
5. A prostitute
6. A young person

Why do they think what they think? Discuss how accurate or not their ideas are.

Drug solutions

In groups, the young people have been promoted and are now in charge of the government department dealing with drugs..

What message would they give to young people about drugs? Do they want to design a poster? What about doing 2 posters, one listing the positive side of drugs, another the negative side.

How would they deal with the drug problem? Is it a problem? Can we solve it? Should we solve it?

A visit

To a drugs project or drugs scheme to talk to the people on the ground. Can the project arrange for the young people to talk to an addict or an ex-addict?

A Video

Can you get hold of a video that shows drugs misuse among children (or their families) perhaps in countries overseas such as Brazil or Colombia, Uganda, South Africa etc. where they show the vivid impact that drugs can have on families and young people, children and the associated risks. Here are some places that have resources: