Now that lockdown has eased, a national campaign has been launched to help young people (aged 16-25) stay safe and look out for each other when meeting up.
The 'Help Your Mate' campaign, from social care charity Change Grow Live, has been set up in response to seeing an increase in organised gatherings that are putting young people at risk.
A spokesperson for the charity said, "After an extended period of lockdown due to Coronavirus, we've seen an increase in organised gatherings where young people are coming together to spend time with their friends.
"In the current climate, these environments are putting our young people at real risk. As well as the challenges with social distancing, these gatherings generally include drugs, alcohol, and other risk-taking activity. Often, they are in remote or rural locations without any on-site welfare support or emergency services, with young people having to rely on friends to keep them safe.
"This trend is one that's likely to continue for several months as young people continue to seek ways to socialise around the restrictions imposed on them."
To combat this, Change Grow Live is releasing a series of weekly harm reduction resources for young people via their social media channels which include information, advice and guidance on targeted themes. The charity is also releasing information on how young people can access further support, as well as dedicated information for parents and professionals.
Organisations that work with young people are encouraged to share the key safety messages with their professional networks and via their social media channels.
Get involved by:
- Sharing the campaign content with others - direct people to the campaign's landing page, which includes information on the weekly themes
- Share or retweet content on Change Grow Live's Twitter and Facebook pages