aVONDALE COMMUNITY ACTION ON HUFFING
Auckland Council CAYAD
Objective: To reduce huffing of glue by young people and groups aged 18 to 24 in the Avondale area and ensure they have support for their needs.
What was done? CAYAD supported a network of local stakeholders including schools, youth and sports organisations, police, social agencies and council to develop a comprehensive community action plan to address the factors contributing to local huffing. Key actions were to:
- Reduce access to glue from local shops and upskill local shop owners on the harms of huffing, what to look for and how to respond.
- Increase reporting/intel gathering of suspicious purchases of glue and of young people on the streets in Avondale.
- Raise awareness in the local community about the harms of huffing and how to respond to incidents.
- Enhance working relationships between police and local youth organisations to respond to the issues and engage with young people huffing.
- Activate spaces where young people are huffing in public.
Results to date
- Shops agreed to restrict supply of glues to under 18s, and record purchases by name and ID.
- Within two weeks incidents of young people sniffing glue in Avondale reduced significantly.
- Capacity of police and youth workers to engage and offer support to young people on the streets was enhanced.
- An unused community space which had been used for huffing now offers daily activities and sports for young people, organised by local agencies. Five young people who had been identified as at risk are regular attendees.
- The hub is growing to offer more activities, and has become a permanent fixture.
- The community plans to work with young people to implement further activities in Central Reserve.