Twenty eight libraries hosted the Drug and Alcohol Info Hub in 2018-19, in 12 metro and 16 regional locations. Libraries presented a variety of events including mocktails, festivals, standard drink demonstrations, beer goggles, presenting to schools and hosting talks by the local Community Drug Action Team (CDAT). Highlights from 2019 are below.
MidCoast Council Libraries
MidCoast Council Libraries hosted the Hub at Taree and Forster during June 2019.
The council collaborated with the Greater Manning Myall Lakes Community Drug Action Team to bring addiction specialist Dr Julian Keats to Taree and Forster. Dr Keats delivered talks on drug and alcohol addiction to 68 attendees from the drug and alcohol sector and the public. He examined the factors that lead to initial drug use, the reasons some people continue to use drugs, and the impact of addiction on individuals and society. Dr Keats is a Doctor of Medicine and specialist in addiction medicine. He worked for Drug and Alcohol Clinical Services in Hunter New England Local Health District.
MidCoast Libraries manager, Chris Jones said These talks and the hub are all about offering help and education for these serious issues, in a safe, non-threatening and informal environment.
Shoalhaven Libraries hosted the Hub at Nowra during May 2019.
The display was located in a large open space in the middle of the library - perfectly placed for clients accessing magazines, the non-fiction section, and the children's and youth areas.
Shoalhaven Libraries work closely with Illawarra and Shoalhaven Health, and took the opportunity to invite them to deliver two presentations on drugs and alcohol awareness and the effects of alcohol on driving. Illawarra and Shoalhaven Health provided clients with resources to complement the Hub's materials.
Nowra Library also held beer goggle activities and drug facts activities onsite as well as conducting two school visits.
Northern Beaches Libraries
Northern Beaches Libraries hosted the Hub in the foyer area of Warringah Mall Library in July 2019.
The library installed a temporary PC with touch screen with the Your Room quiz running on it. Visitors could report their high score at the counter to receive a small reward. Library staff reported a high level of engagement with the Hub's interactive puzzles and colourful brochures and pamphlets.
Working closely with the Northern Beaches CDAT and other local agencies, the library organised three events over three weeks targeting three different groups:
- CDAT volunteers attended the seniors’ digital literacy workshop distributing drug & alcohol resources during lunch hour.
- The library ran an activity targeting young mums after their regular Rhyme Time session (an interactive session of rhymes, songs and movement to help develop early literacy skills in 0-2 year olds). Mums were shown the Drug Info Hub where CDAT members were on hand to answer drug and alcohol related questions. The library provided healthy snacks for children and mothers.
- The library organised a beer goggles obstacle course for young adults. They also set up stands for Catholic Care and the NSW Health Sobriety Coach to talk to participants and distribute resources.
Visitors to the library reacted positively to the events and displays, particularly the mocktail postcards.
Campsie Library and Knowledge Centre
Campsie Library hosted the Hub in May 2019.
The Hub was set up outside the Teen Chill Zone, where teen activity sessions are run every Wednesday. On consecutive Wednesdays over May, Campsie hosted beer goggle activities at the teen zone where young adults donned goggles and walked around witches hats, lurched from one chair to another, and tried picking up a ball in the middle of a pathway. One teen even tried to play video games in the teen chill zone. They were surprised at how difficult the activities were, and didn’t enjoy the ‘drunk’ feeling.