NCFY Reports

Beyond Addiction: Understanding and Treating Substance Abuse in Young People

Photograph of three hopeful young people.

Few things threaten a young person’s safety and well-being like an addiction to drugs or alcohol. And research shows that youth with a history of trauma and a lack of positive adult role models are at greater risk for substance abuse. In this edition of NCFY reports, we present three angles on treating addiction in young clients—and ways to support your staff in this difficult, necessary work.

We start with a discussion of recent research into substance addiction’s effects on the teen brain, and what youth workers can do to help before it’s too late. Next we talk to two different youth-serving agencies about the benefits and obstacles of employing staff who have their own substance-abuse histories. And last we’ll share a few of the evidence-based practices that have shown promise in treating substance abuse in young people. Only with the best, proven methods can we address this difficult problem and really work to give young people their best chance at a safe and healthy life.

As always, we want to hear from you. Has your program had particular success helping young clients beat addiction? Has your community taken action to solve this problem? Are you looking for collaborators or help for your specific population? Join the discussion on our Facebook page or on Twitter

9-5 pm Eastern