Youth Without Alcohol

The project 'Youth without alcohol' takes into account the general dangers of alcohol, especially for children and juveniles. There is a direct influence of alcohol on the beginning of delinquency, on the personal feeling of security. The use can lead to a state of neglect and to addiction. The consequences of alcohol use is a burden for the health system and a damage to the national economy. The project appeals to children and juveniles, their parents and teachers. The goal of the programme 'Youth without alcohol' is to reduce getting a victim in case of alcohol use and to reduce delinquency in case of alcohol use, especially violence.

Initiators of the project ‘Youth without alcohol’ have been, apart from the Bremen police, the following co-operating institutions:

  • The Bremen addiction counselling organisation based at the Federal Institute School at the Senator of Education and Science Bremen
  • Bureau of social services based at the Senator of social welfare
  • A health insurance company (DAK) and
  • Kiel Institute for Therapy and Health Research

The Bremen addiction counselling organisation is the original institution responsible for addiction prevention in Bremen. The organisation counselled the project and guaranteed the realization of the information campaign in educational institutions.
The bureau of social services went to parents to inform them about their children or juveniles being caught in a drunken state.
The ‘DAK’ , a health insurance company, made available the information package ‘Aktion Glasklar’ of the Kiel Institute for Therapy and Health Research.
The Institute for Therapy and Health Research developed an evidenced based information package for children and juveniles, parents and teachers.

First, the DAK brought the information package ‘Aktion Glasklar’ of the Institute for Therapy and Health Research to schools via police officer specialized for the contact with the citizens. The police officer had to inform how many schools, how many pupils, parents and teachers they offered the information package. In a second step, there was a construction of an ‘arrest report of drunken juveniles’. This report was set in the intranet of the Bremen police. Via internal public relations the project ‘Youth without alcohol’ got well-known in the Bremen police. The police officers were asked in relevant cases to fill out the ‘arrest report for drunken juveniles’ and to organise that the report will get to the project.

In the course of the public campaign of the project ‘Youth without alcohol’ altogether 4168 pupils, 2388 parents and 150 teachers got the information package ‘Aktion Glasklar’ of the Kiel Institute for Therapy and Health Research.

From 18. March to 31. December there has been an increase of alcohol control of children and Juveniles. Altogether 155 children and juveniles have been found drunken on public places. The proportion of male has been 68,4 of female 31,6 The average age for the male group was 15,7 years, for the female group 15,4 years.

11% of the juveniles have been found in a helpless situation. 11,6% have been found totally drunk. 47,1% of the group had some problems to speak and 64,5% showed strong restrictions in their ability to react. 54,2% of drunk children and juveniles have been arrested on a fair. The police could only inform 34,2% of their parents about the arrest. The project could give to 90,3% of the parents of children and juveniles arrested for being drunk the information package for parents ‘Aktion Glasklar’.

The project wrote to 141 children and juveniles and 141 parents regarding the evaluation inquiry. There has been a return rate of 31% in regard of the parents and of 39,5% in regard of the children and juveniles.

In 54,5% of the cases the parents knew the project ‘Youth without alcohol’, because they received a letter from the police. 91% of the parents found the acting of the police correct. They thought that the police should care that children and juveniles do not get and do not drink alcohol. As parents they cannot be at every place where their children are. Also they thought that only few restaurateurs cared about the Law of the protection of juveniles in public places. About 60% of the parents knew the regulations of the Law of the protection of juveniles. 95,5% of the parents did have a dispute with their children about substance abuse. 77,3% of the parents were against that their children drink alcopops. 72,7% of the parents knew state-run institution and/or non-governmental organisations dealing with problems of substance abuse.

31,8% thought that the attitudes of their children towards the use of alcohol had changed after the arrest of the police. 36,4% of the parents changed their own attitudes.

50% of the children and juveniles knew the project ‘Youth without alcohol’. 85,7% got the information from their parents who got the letter from the police. 44,4% thought that it was all right that the police arrested them. They said that the police has to take care that children and juveniles do not get or drink alcohol. Because the children and juveniles know themselves that they should not drink alcohol. 67,7% of the children and juveniles asked for drink alcohol for fun: They think it is a more funny situation then, and most of them said that they get alcohol by friends, at petrol stations and super markets. 85,7% heard of the Law for the protection of Juveniles. 33% have been informed by their parents, 25% at school and 12% by the police.

After having being arrested by the police 29,6% said that they changed their behaviour in relation to alcohol. Half of them said that they were ashamed to be taken with the police.

The project ‘Youth without alcohol’ proves that co-operative actions between private and public institutions against alcohol and violence done in the way of public campaigns and an increase of control by the police can contribute to a change in the attitude of children and juveniles as well as their parents towards the use of alcohol. The risk of getting a victim or an offender in a drunken state can be reduced.

 

The project started in 2005 and is still running.
Last review: September 2014.