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Drugs Scene in South London:
An Evaluation


This evaluation was commissioned by the Central Drugs Prevention Unit of the Home Office as part of the research programme associated with Phase 2 of the Drugs Prevention Initiative. The Drugs Scene in South London Project was a multi-faceted community-based drugs prevention initiative funded by the South London Drugs Prevention team. The Drugs Scene project involved providing training and resources for teachers, youth workers and parents in South London. An arts event and exhibition with a drugs-related theme was also staged annually.

What did the research focus on?

The Home Office research programme sought to address a number of 'fundamental questions'. The fundamental question relating to the Drugs Scene project was 'Does linking drugs education with consistent information and other approaches delivered in the community add value?' In order to address this question, the evaluation focused on:
  • the role of youth workers in delivering drugs education outside a formal educational setting
  • communication issues between parents and primary school children

What did the research involve?

A number of different research methods were employed. In-depth interviews were being conducted with the project co-ordinator, members of the advisory group, teachers, youth workers and parents. Group interviews were held with primary school children and young people attending youth clubs. Training programmes and resources developed by the project were evaluated by means of self-completion forms. Observation was carried out in schools, youth clubs, training courses and at sessions provided for parents.

Timescale and final product of the research

The evaluation began in Spring 1996 and was completed at the end of 1998 when the Drugs Scene project came to an end.

A report to the Home Office was submitted in 1998, now published:

Shaw C (2001) Drugs Scene: An evaluation of a drugs prevention project in South London Drugs Prevention Advisory Service Briefing Paper 7, London: Home Office.

Available on the web here:

See Publications for further details.

Last updated July 2004