25 June 2009>
The fourth annual national Tackling Drugs Changing Lives Awards, designed to recognise, reward and celebrate the work being done by drug teams and workers across the country, have been launched by Home Office Minister Alan Campbell.
Nominations are being sought in the Caerphilly county borough area for people who have made an outstanding contribution to tackling drugs and who through the course of their actions have changed lives and communities for the better. Examples include those who help with diversionary sports training, drug enforcement activity or professionals who counsel and treat drug users.
Launching the awards, Home Office Minister Alan Campbell, said:
"Every day people working in the drugs field are changing lives for the better. Their work with individual drug users, families and across whole communities transforms lives and improves the places where people live.
These unsung heroes deserve recognition for their efforts in going the extra mile to tackle drugs in our communities and I look forward to hearing many examples of the good work going on as nominations come in over the next few months."
This year there are six award categories. In addition to Drug Team of the Year and Drug Worker of the Year there are four new themed categories looking for people who work with young people, within the criminal justice system, community engagement and the work involved in National Tackling Drugs Week.
There will be five finalists in each of the categories and from these, two overall National Tackling Drugs Changing Lives winners will each receive £10,000 for their organisation to spend on developing their work.
Anyone can nominate a drug worker or drug team whether they are a friend, family member, colleague or service user. More information, along with nomination forms can be found on line at www.drugs.homeoffice.gov.uk/awards2009. The closing date for nominations is Monday 31st August 2009.
Home Office Crime Director for Wales, Gillian Baranski, said:
"Over the last year Wales has continued to benefit from the excellent work that individuals and teams are doing to tackle drugs and drug related crime. This success can be attributed to so many people who all deserve an award and I would really encourage nominations to come forward as Wales has such a good story to tell."
Last year's winners included:
- A retired police officer, who now, as a drugs worker for a homeless charity, plays a vital role in helping to pick up individuals who slip through the net or drop out of treatment.
- A young people's worker who provides intensive one to one support and group work for young men who display challenging behaviour and who use a variety of substances.
- A specialist service for members of the BME community recovering from substance misuse problems.
- A family-focused crisis intervention service working with families where there are serious child protection concerns directly relating to parental substance misuse.
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