Drug awareness talk given to students at Sidmouth College

PUBLISHED: 07:08 08 November 2018

Pupils Matthew, Harry, Jamie, Lucy and  Will attended the drug awareness sesssions. Picture: Philippa Davies

Pupils Matthew, Harry, Jamie, Lucy and Will attended the drug awareness sesssions. Picture: Philippa Davies

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Sidmouth College hosted an event giving pupils realistic and honest information about the drugs they could be offered

Sidmouth College sixth-formers Jade, Cian and Emily. Picture: Philippa DaviesSidmouth College sixth-formers Jade, Cian and Emily. Picture: Philippa Davies

Hard-hitting drugs awareness sessions have been held at Sidmouth College, warning students about the very real dangers.

Around 700 students attended presentations throughout the school day on Thursday, November 1.

Afterwards, school staff attended a session, along with members of the School Nurse service, the county council and the youth service. A further presentation was attended by police officers and parents.

The presentations were given by former policeman Dave Parvin of Drug Sense UK, who dealt with drug deaths during his time as an officer. His talk for the students included real-life stories of young people who died after taking drugs, and graphic descriptions of the effects on the body. He emphasised that many of the deaths are not among habitual drug users, but teenagers experimenting for the first time.

Sidmouth college pupils Matthew, Harry, Jamie, Lucy and  Will. Picture: Philippa DaviesSidmouth college pupils Matthew, Harry, Jamie, Lucy and Will. Picture: Philippa Davies

Lucy, aged 14, said: “It was really shocking. People just above us, like 15, when they took it, and the effects, what happened to them and their family.”

Harry, 12, said, “It was interesting because it gave you more of an idea why not to take drugs. I didn’t know that Ecstasy can kill you in 10 minutes. I would never do it.”

Jade, Cian and Emily are all in the sixth form. Jade said: “It made people aware of what drugs can do. It was sad at the beginning, with a video that showed a girl, photos of her growing up, and then she died at the age of 20 from taking drugs.”

Cian said: “I thought it was very powerful, it was graphic, seeing it really made them realise how bad drugs can be.”

Emily said, “I think it was really hard-hitting.”

Mr Parvin also warned the students about the County Lines operation in which drug dealers involve young people in their criminal activities.

In the later sessions, parents were told about the signs of substance misuse in the early stages, the types of drugs currently doing the rounds, and the associated paraphernalia they could come across in the home. Drugs and drug-taking equipment were on display.

The event was paid for by a grant from the Police and Crime Commissioner, who funds initiatives tackling crime.

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