This is my first independent blog. I am really excited to be starting as a freelancer, continuing of course to work in the drugs field but also exploring, hopefully, wider avenues.
I also start my part-time PhD at the end of September. I am determined to find more clues about how some of the most socially excluded young people thrive and succeed.
It’s been a common gripe of mine when working in the drug prevention field that we’ve permitted the demonisation of adolescents, normalising the perception that they’re all out to mug old ladies and only interested in getting pissed or off their faces. “Adolescent” is a derogatory term, rather than describing the important transition from youth to adulthood. My experiences over the past (almost) 20 years working in various roles in drugs, health and social care settings has been that, with respect, patience and responsibility, young people have inspired me to think that the future might be better rather than worse.
I hope that this will be an active blog, where we can share experiences not only about difficulties but about success. For me this is an exciting time, not without risks of course, but if we don’t take risks, we don’t appreciate life. I feel energised and liberated – now, I just need to get some work in to pay the mortgage!
Looking forward to hearing from others.