The Great South Coast Ice Challenge brought crucial groups together for a whole community approach.The important role parents can play to helptackle crystalmethamphetamine addiction was a focal pointat theGreat South Coast Ice Challenge summit on Friday.

The daybrought key groupstogetherin an unprecedented push to tackle the region’s problem with the drug ice.

The crowd of more than100 attendees was made up of researchers, practitioners, students, two former ice addicts as well as representatives from local government, the Victoria Police and the Australian Drug Foundation.

“I’m very enthusiastic about the organisation of a community response because there’s a strong evidence base that solutions can come if we have working groups very well linked in with local government, and that’s the way this has been organised,” Deakin Universitypsychologyprofessor John Toumbourou said.

Some of the key ideas from the summit included:

The need for a parent education program;Former ice users sharing their experiences andserving as mentors to young people;The need for student support services;Using student ID cards to provide ice support service information;Setting up a youth mentoring program;Building on the existing Communities that Care program to include parental education;A t-shirt competition for year nine students to promote messages about avoiding ice use andA Youth art competition to promote positive messages.Ideas raised byproject teams fromMoyne, Corangamite, Glenelg, Warrnambool and Southern Grampianswill be developedand presentedin late August.

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