Category Archives: News

Polish version of Quick Guide to EDPQS published

Quick Guide PolishWe are pleased to announce that the Quick Guide to the European Drug Prevention Quality Standards (EDPQS) is now also available in Polish, meaning that the guide is now available in 13 languages.

Colleagues at the Polish National Bureau for Drug Prevention (NBDP) and the Masovian Centre for Social Policy (MCPS) (see our Partnership page) have been actively promoting the EDPQS in Poland for a number of years. Activities have included:

  • Translation of the EDPQS Manual into Polish
  • Publication of articles in professional magazines (for details and downloads, see the Polish country page)
  • Delivery of workshops – most recently in Torun during the conference for local communities (around 60 persons) and in Pabianice (around 20 persons), with presentations in Poznan and the Masovian region planned for the coming weeks; and
  • Conferences dedicated to the topic of quality standards (October 2014, June 2015).

The Polish version of the Quick Guide is an adaptation of the original guide, and contains two parts:

  1. the first part corresponds to the original Quick Guide
  2. the second part has been prepared by Artur Malczewski from the NBDP and provides contextual information regarding the role of the EDPQS in Poland and the work that has been undertaken in Poland to support the EDPQS

The Quick Guide thus follows up on and updates professionals in Poland on EDPQS-related developments since the publication of the Manual in Polish in 2011.

Quick Guide in PolishPrinted copies of the Quick Guide will be distributed mainly in the Mazovian region (region surrounding Warsaw), but also to the 16 provincial experts on drugs and drug addiction and other people interested in the topic.

Recognising, however, that distributing materials is not sufficient to develop professional practice, colleagues at the NBDP and MCPS will continue to provide training on the quality standards. A two-day workshop using EDPQS Toolkit 3 is planned to take place before the end of the year, following up on the success of a pilot training event held in February 2015.

Participants at the pilot training event in Poland, February 2015

Participants at the pilot training event in Poland, February 2015

The publication of the Quick Guide in Polish marks the beginning of a series of EDPQS publications in Polish, as outputs from the EDPQS Phase II project will be translated and published in the months ahead.

Click here to download the Quick Guide in Polish (file size: 2.3 MB)

 

More more information about the EDPQS in Poland, please visit the Poland country page.

Minimum quality standards for drug demand reduction interventions in the EU

EU Council ConclusionsOn 14 September 2015, the Council of the European Union adopted Council conclusions on the implementation of minimum quality standards in drug demand reduction in the EU.

The new “minimum quality standards in drug demand reduction in the EU” build on previous initiatives to formulate and establish quality standards in prevention, treatment and harm reduction, including the European Drug Prevention Quality Standards (EDPQS) initiative (although developed through a separate activity, not directly related to the EDPQS Phase I or Phase II projects).

Recognising that implementation of standards such as the EDPQS cannot rely on engagement with practitioners alone, but requires political support at all levels, these new standards can be considered a major achievement as they have been formally endorsed by the governments of the EU Member States. It is hoped that they will provide a significant foundation upon which to implement future activities to support high quality in the drug demand reduction field (including prevention), to professionalise the workforce and strengthen existing delivery systems.

The European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) commented on the publication of the minimum standards as follows:

“This innovative initiative lists 16 standards that represent a minimum benchmark of quality for interventions in: drug use prevention, risk and harm reduction, treatment, social integration and rehabilitation. Although non-binding for national governments, this document represents the political will of EU countries to address demand reduction interventions through an evidence-based perspective.” (http://www.emcdda.europa.eu/news/2015/eu-minimum-quality-standards)

The political process leading up to this achievement required several years of work and the long-term support and commitment of many stakeholders. The European Prevention Standards Partnership followed the development closely and supported it at several stages. A milestone in the process, for example, was the publication of a first proposal for minimum standards in 2011: the EQUS Minimum Quality Standards in Drug Demand Reduction. These were developed in collaboration with the European Prevention Standards Partnership (responsible for the prevention strand; for further details see Example 6 in our EDPQS Toolkit 4).

The work on EU minimum standards then advanced significantly during the EU Presidencies of Italy (2014) and of Latvia (2015), with a revised proposal for minimum standards drawn up and discussed in a year-long process during the meetings of the Horizontal Working Party on Drugs (HDG) (highlighted in a previous blog post regarding the CND 2015 Side Event). Representatives of the European Prevention Standards Partnership provided input regarding the methods and sources used to develop the minimum standards, as well as their contents.

We are pleased that the endorsed minimum standards are fully compatible with, and make explicit reference to, the EDPQS. The EDPQS will continue to be helpful to achieve these minimum standards in the prevention field, and to think about quality standards and the practicalities of achieving quality at a more in-depth level.

“Minimum quality standards for drug demand reduction interventions in the EU”

Quick Guide available in Swedish

Quick Guide SwedishAn adapted version of the ‘quick guide’ to the European Drug Prevention Quality Standards (EDPQS), published in 2013 by the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) in collaboration with the Prevention Standards Partnership, is now available in Swedish.

The Swedish Quick Guide was produced as part of the “Three Cities” project (Swedish title: Trestad2). This was a joint initiative between the three largest cities in Sweden (Stockholm, Malmö and Gothenburg) aimed at improving the policies and interventions addressing young people’s cannabis use. A broader aim of the project was to promote quality and workforce competencies in prevention across Sweden, and hence a special sub-project sought to adapt the European quality standards to the Swedish context.

Work on the adaptation started in 2010 and was implemented as a long-term consensus-building process involving policy makers, practitioners and researchers from the three cities as well as from across the country. The project received financial support from the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs under the national ANDT (Alcohol, Narcotic drugs, Doping and Tobacco) Strategy as well as from the city government. The Public Health Agency of Sweden actively supported the adaptation of the material and is now a key player in disseminating the output.

Stockholm

The National Reference Group at a working group meeting with Prof Harry Sumnall and Angelina Brotherhood (Stockholm, May 2014).

Adaptation of the EDPQS to the Swedish context proceeded in collaboration with the EU Prevention Standards Partnership. The Social Development Unit, Social Services Administration, City of Stockholm formally joined the Partnership in 2013 as an Associate Partner, and the Swedish adaptation of EDPQS served as a case study during the EDPQS Phase II project (as reported in a previous blog entry). The picture above shows Prof Harry Sumnall and Angelina Brotherhood attending a meeting in Stockholm in May 2014 to discuss the EDPQS with the national reference group which had been set up to inform the adaptation.

The EU Prevention Standards Partnership followed the Swedish adaptation process with great interest, and the experiences gathered by the Swedish colleagues were essential for the development of EDPQS Toolkit 4. In fact, it was these colleagues’ questions and learning that prompted the development of our guide to adapting and disseminating the EDPQS.

Further information on the Swedish experience of adapting the EDPQS can be found in the Toolkit 4 Example Projects and on our Sweden country page. On that page you can also access a video interview with Anders Eriksson, City of Stockholm, and his colleagues Mats Glans and Ulf Ljungberg, City of Malmö.

All resources to support use of the Standards can be found in our resources section.

Conference announcement: “Minimum Quality Standards in Drug Demand Reduction”, 10-11 June 2015 – Warsaw, Poland

Our Polish EDPQS project partners, the Polish Reitox Focal Point (National Bureau for Drug Prevention, NBDP) and the Masovian Centre for Social Policy (MCPS), will host their annual drug prevention conference in Warsaw, Poland on 10-11 June 2015 (full day on 10th, half day on 11th).

Participants can expect presentations and discussions on:

  • The European drug report EMCDDA 2015 (Alessandro Pirona), with a focus on the situation in Poland
  • The European Drug Prevention Quality Standards (EDPQS), focussing on Phase II outputs and implementation efforts in Poland (Angelina Brotherhood, Artur Malczewski)
  • The EU Minimum Quality Standards in Drug Demand Reduction, as developed by the Horizontal Drugs Group (HDG) under the presendencies of Italy and Latvia, with speakers from Latvia (Agnese Zile-Veisberga), the United Kingdom (Harry Sumnall) and the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction EMCDDA (Alessandro Pirona)
  • The COMIQS.BE project, focussing on the process used to develop quality standards in Belgium (Johan Jongbloet)
  • New Psychoactive Substances, with contributions from the Netherlands (Jean-Paul Grund), the United Kingdom (Harry Sumnall) and Poland (Michał Kidawa)
  • Cannabis: analysing current situation and responses as well as recent policy changes in the United States, with contributions from the Netherlands (Jean-Paul Grund), Latvia (Agnese Zile-Veisberga) and Poland (Krzysztof Krajewski, Bogusława Bukowska).

Attendance at the event is free. Meals and accommodation are also provided by the organisers. Participants will have to cover their own travel costs and make their own travel arrangements.

Draft conference programme

Registration Form (Deadline for registration: 3rd June 2015)

It is expected that the event will be attended by some 150 individuals. For more information, please contact Artur Malczewski at artur.malczewski@kbpn.gov.pl.

The EDPQS Partnership at the previous drug prevention conference

Members of the EDPQS Partnership at the previous national drug prevention conference in Warsaw, 2014

Conference talk on EDPQS now available to watch online

Last year in October, EDPQS researcher Angelina Brotherhood presented the European Drug Prevention Quality Standards (EDPQS) at the International Symposium on Drug Policy and Public Health in Istanbul, Turkey.

This 16 min talk is now available to watch online below:


If you have trouble accessing the video above, you can also view the talk on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N6M589Om0Tc

Project Update #8: EDPQS Phase II has formally ended

The second phase of the European Drug Prevention Quality Standards (EDPQS) project formally ended on 31st March 2015. We’re pleased to report that all project activities were successfully completed, and the project outputs are now in the final stages of preparation (translation, graphical design).

Please come back in summer 2015, when this website will be re-launched with the new EDPQS Toolkits.

CND 2015 Side event: “Developing and promoting quality standards in drug demand reduction”

This year’s meeting of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) featured a side event on quality standards. The event was a joint initiative of the European Union, the Government of Latvia, the African Union Commission, the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction, the UNODC Drug Prevention and Health Branch, and the Prevention Standards Partnership (represented by Liverpool John Moores University, UK).

Ambassadors Györgyi Martin Zanathy and Bahtijors Hasans

The event was opened by Ambassador Györgyi Martin Zanathy, Head of the Delegation of the European Union to the International Organisations in Vienna. Ambassador Zanathy emphasised that promotion of quality in the field of drug demand reduction is a priority for the European Union, with three projects funded to this effect – the “Study on the Development of an EU Framework for Minimum quality standards and benchmarks in drug demand reduction” (EQUS) (see our related activities page) and, specifically in the area of prevention, the EDPQS Phase I and Phase II projects. She further praised the efforts of the Civil Society Forum on Drugs (CSF) in this regard, referring also to the CSF’s recent submission of a Thematic Paper on EU minimum quality standards for drug demand reduction to the Horizontal Working Party on Drugs (HDG).

The event was chaired by Ambassador Bahtijors Hasans, the Permanent Representative of the Republic of Latvia to the UN, OSCE and Other International Organizations in Vienna. In his introductory statement, Ambassador Hasans stressed how projects to promote quality standards encourage different stakeholders from government and civil society to come to the negotiation table and to work together towards an evidence-based approach to addressing drug-related needs.

These opening remarks were followed by four presentations to introduce ongoing efforts in this area from different parts of the world.

Dr Gilberto Gerra referring to the treatment of Lymphoma to emphasise the importance of quality standards

Dr Gilberto Gerra, Chief of the Drug Prevention and Health Branch at the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), used examples from the medical field to highlight the importance of quality standards. He argued that few people would agree to medical treatment by a doctor who refuses to follow an evidence-based protocol to treat their condition, preferring instead to follow intuition. This, however, was the reality for many activities in drug demand reduction. Dr Gerra argued that the evidence is clear on what doesn’t work to address drug-related needs, but that this knowledge does not sufficiently inform policy and practice. The UNODC has published, and is continuing to develop, standards and guidelines for prevention and treatment. Yet the challenge remains to make these documents widely known and used in different contexts.

Presentation by Ambassador Dr Olawale Maiyegun

Ambassador Dr Olawale Maiyegun, Director of Social Affairs at the African Union Commission (AUC), presented work undertaken by the African Union to raise the quality of treatment for drug dependence. Activities by the AUC include training the workforce, for example as part of the UNODC’s Treatnet projects or using the Universal Treatment Curriculum (UTC). Differences in countries’ public health care systems, along with cultural and socio-economic factors, were one of the challenges which the AUC faces in this process. However, according to Ambassador Maiyegun, the major challenge for the African continent lies in the over-reliance on supply reduction and criminal justice approaches. He commented that treatment was virtually non-existent in some countries, and where it did, treatment practices could be of such a poor standard that they led to greater harm than drug use itself. In this context, promoting quality standards offered an opportunity to redress the balance between supply and demand reduction, and to advocate for greater investment in treatment.

Presentation by Mr Jānis Bekmanis

Next up was Mr Jānis Bekmanis, President of the Horizontal Working Party on Drugs (HDG) during the Latvian Presidency at the Council of the European Union. Mr Bekmanis embedded the projects to promote quality standards within the EU’s wider activities to support high quality drug demand reduction, referring also to the EMCDDA’s Best Practice Portal. Mr Bekmanis was unable to share details with the plenum about the EU minimum quality standards in drug demand reduction, as these standards are still under discussion by the EU Member States. He did disclose that they would include standards for prevention, risk and harm reduction, as well as treatment and rehabilitation. Across these three areas, the standards would reflect common principles oriented toward human rights, monitoring and evaluation, and target population needs. Once the standards have been agreed on by Member States, Mr Bekmanis suggested that further work would be required to support and monitor implementation of the standards.

Prof Harry Sumnall

Finally, Prof Harry Sumnall, Professor in Substance Use at Centre for Public Health, Liverpool John Moores University, spoke on behalf of the Prevention Standards Partnership. Prof Sumnall highlighted that promoting quality in European prevention required collaboration with many partners. This included not only the members of the Prevention Standards Partnership but also other projects and organisations committed to high-quality drug prevention, such as the Three Cities project in Sweden or COPOLAD. A major challenge in promoting quality was how to support the prevention workforce to use and implement quality standards. Prof Sumnall argued that for a true improvement in professional practice, it is not sufficient to influence prevention providers as individuals and organisations, but that policy-makers must create the structures necessary to promote quality. He cited examples from the Czech Republic and Croatia, where the quality of preventive activities is considered when selecting projects for governmental funding. Across Europe, these examples represented the exception rather than the rule. The outputs from the EDPQS Phase II project would therefore include a guide for decision-makers to help revise funding and commissioning systems toward a greater emphasis on quality.

The side event was attended by around 50 participants, and several delegates approached Prof Sumnall over the course of the CND to discuss the role of standards in improving the quality of drug demand reduction activities, including representatives from the Australian Drug Foundation and the New Zealand Drug Foundation.

– Angelina Brotherhood

Harry Sumnall and Angelina Brotherhood with some of the colleagues who helped realise this side event (Jānis Bekmanis, Evika Siliņa and Agnese Veisberga, Government of Latvia; Artur Malczewski, National Bureau for Drug Prevention, Poland; Giovanna Campello, UNODC Drug Prevention and Health Branch) Introducing the EDPQS project Prevention Standards Partnership

Audience at the side event Audience at the side event Harry Sumnall & Angelina Brotherhood with John Rogerson, Australian Drug Foundation, and Ross Bell, NZ Drug Foundation

Silke Vitt was available at the EMCDDA stand to provide further information EDPQS Manual could be picked up during the event as well as from EMCDDA stand Project partner Artur Malczewski of the National Bureau for Drug Prevention (NBDP), Poland, was also present during the CND and referred to the EDPQS during another side event when describing the Polish prevention system

Project Update #7: Final partnership meeting and EDPQS workshop in Athens

EDPQS Partnership

The Prevention Standards Partnership in Athens, Greece

From 23rd to 25th February 2015, the Prevention Standards Partnership met in Athens, Greece, to discuss progress on the European Drug Prevention Quality Standards (EDPQS) Phase II project as well as possible next steps. Additionally, on 26th February, Greek project partner UMHRI organised a national training event on EDPQS, involving practitioners and commissioners from all over Greece.

Discussing findings from the ‘pilot training’ – finalising the EDPQS Training Pack

With the Phase II project officially coming to an end in March 2015, the Partnership focused on necessary actions to finalise the toolkits being developed at this stage of the work. Special attention was given to the results of the ‘pilot training’ activity, which was carried out in six partner countries at the beginning of 2015 (Mentor International’s Prevention Hub reported on the London event). During this pilot, the Partners tested the forthcoming EDPQS Training Pack, which has been developed by project partners ASL 2 Savonese and LJMU. In total, 99 individuals participated in the pilot training, including practitioners, policy-makers, commissioners, national certifiers and University students.

The EDPQS Training Pack will include a trainer’s guide, PowerPoint slides and handouts that can be used to deliver training on how to use the EDPQS. The intention is to provide materials which, if read and followed carefully, will enable interested individuals to become EDPQS trainers and to introduce and promote the EDPQS in their own contexts.

Pilot training in Warsaw

Groupwork activity during the pilot training event in Warsaw, Poland

Results from the pilot training suggested that participants enjoyed the training, and that it helped them to appreciate the EDPQS more fully. Data about the pilot training were collected through observations, open discussions, a quiz and feedback forms. Partners reported that although many participants had known about the EDPQS previously, it was this training which helped participants to really understand how the standards can bring about practical benefits. Across all countries, participants’ favourite session was a group exercise during which the quality of a fictional prevention project was reviewed, using the EDPQS checklist from the Quick Guide. From the trainers’ perspective, project partners highlighted that more time should be allocated to the group exercises, as these were most beneficial to participants and facilitated a deeper engagement with the standards. At the meeting, the Partnership discussed these findings and agreed on necessary revisions of the EDPQS Training Pack.

Once the toolkits are ready for publication, the website will be updated accordingly and the Training Pack will then become available for download. The meeting also provided an opportunity to record video messages from Project Partners concerning the EDPQS project and the forthcoming toolkits, which will be added to the website alongside the toolkits.

Beyond Phase II

Plans for EDPQS activities beyond Phase II were also discussed. It was encouraging that all partners reported plans to continue work with the EDPQS at their national level. Besides promoting the toolkits, most Partners intend to use the EDPQS Training Pack to deliver training on the EDPQS in the months following Phase II. However, to better coordinate and sustain these efforts it was agreed that a Phase III project would be most beneficial. This confirmed the findings of a meeting held earlier this month in Bergeggi, Italy, under the auspices of Italian project partner Rachele Donini of ASL 2 Savonese to discuss plans for a potential Phase III. It was also reconfirmed that future work should focus on models of prevention systems and how the EDPQS can help to improve prevention policy-making and commissioning.

Promoting EDPQS in Greece

Greek project partners Ioulia Bafi and Anastasios Fotiou from the University Mental Health Research Institute (UMHRI), Greece, made use of the presence of the Partnership and organised a training event on the day following the partnership meeting. Some 20 practitioners and commissioners from different parts of Greece attended this event, many of whom had already been involved in earlier activities of the project and were interested to find out more.

Professor Harry Sumnall gave a lecture describing current concepts and emerging issues regarding prevention, and how quality standards may support prevention activities. The presentation expanded on some of the issues which will also be explored in the forthcoming EDPQS Position Paper authored by Harry.

This was followed by a session exploring different country prevention systems. Angelina Brotherhood highlighted that research has only begun in recent years to explore the differences between country prevention systems, and which elements of such systems are best suited to support high quality in drug prevention. Following this introduction, systems in four countries were presented and discussed: Sweden, Poland, United Kingdom, and Greece. Contributions were made by Anders Eriksson from the Social Development Unit, Social Services Administration, Stockholm, Sweden; Artur Malczewski from the Polish National Bureau for Drug Prevention (NBDP); Harry Sumnall from Liverpool John Moores University; and Sotia Makaroni from PRONOI, a Greek prevention provider who was involved in the ‘case study’ activity also undertaken in EDPQS Phase II. The current and potential role of quality standards was highlighted in each presentation.

A group exercise was then undertaken in line with the EDPQS Training Pack. In groups, participants discussed mechanisms which exist in Greece to ensure the quality of preventive work, and how these mechanisms could be improved and supported using EDPQS. Participants engaged very much with this discussion, and the session ended only because the facilitator had to leave for the airport.

The Greek hosts Ioulia and Anastasios concluded the day by asking participants to devise an action plan about how to promote quality and use of quality standards in their own work, their organisation and at the national level. Feedback from the group suggested the need for training on EDPQS, but also helped to identify a group of motivated stakeholders active at the national level who could support the promotion and application of EDPQS in Greece.

It was interesting for the EDPQS Project Partners to meet members of the Greek prevention community and to experience the enthusiasm for high quality prevention displayed by the group. Likewise, participants enjoyed meeting in person the authors of the EDPQS, as well as being able to network with their colleagues from other parts in Greece and to discuss how the quality of prevention can be further promoted and developed in this country. This was a perfect example for the kind of exchange and advocacy at national level which the EDPQS project hopes to set in motion.

Invitation: EDPQS at the 58th session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND)

CND logo

We’re very pleased to announce that the 58th session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) will feature a side event on quality standards in drug demand reduction, including a presentation by Professor Harry Sumnall on the European Drug Prevention Quality Standards (EDPQS).

12.3.2015 Update: Please access our report on this event here.

This side event is a joint initiative of the European Union, the Government of Latvia, the African Union Commission, the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction, the UNODC Drug Prevention and Health Branch, and the Prevention Standards Partnership (represented by Liverpool John Moores University, UK). Representatives of these organisations will provide an update on their current efforts to develop and promote quality standards in drug demand reduction.

CND 2015 Side event: “DEVELOPING AND PROMOTING QUALITY STANDARDS IN DRUG DEMAND REDUCTION”
Date and time: 11 March 2015, 13.10 – 14.00
Location: Conference Room M3, Vienna International Centre, Vienna, Austria

Download the official invitation

Further information on this side event is also available from the Centre for Public Health at Liverpool John Moores University, UK. To find out more about the CND, visit the UNODC website. The programme for CND 2015, including all main sessions and side events, is available for download here.

Please do come along to our side event if you will be attending this year’s CND.

 

Project Update #6: The current EDPQS Project enters its final phase

Jeff LeeIn today’s blog, Project Manager Jeff Lee from the Centre for Public Health at Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) reviews the work undertaken by the Prevention Standards Partnership during 2014 and outlines the final phase of work. The European Drug Prevention Quality Standards (EDPQS) Phase II Project will formally come to an end on 31 March 2015.

What happened during 2014?

Time has flown and it seems incredible that we are now entering the final three months of the project’s life. Two important activities were begun late in 2013 and pursued during the first half of 2014. The two initial activities involved a “mapping” of existing toolkits in the health promotion field, and a needs assessment to help identify priority target audiences for EDPQS support materials and their needs (see Project Update 2 and Project Update 5 for details).

The findings from these two pieces of research provided important information and a baseline for the major focus of the second half of 2014 – the planning, development and writing of the EDPQS toolkits.

The toolkits will be a major project outcome intended to raise the awareness and help with the application of the Quality Standards by those engaged with planning, supporting or reviewing prevention related initiatives. LJMU led on this task and developed a methodology that could be used to prepare the toolkits. This was reviewed and refined with project partners and resulted in a plan for developing three toolkits.

Development of the toolkits is still ongoing. Each toolkit is being developed through a Partner acting as the lead: Eötvös Loránd University in Hungary; ASL Milano in Italy and LJMU in the UK. Each lead Partner is supported by other Partners that have been assigned to support a particular toolkit’s development.

Three toolkits are in process:

  • A toolkit to assist policy makers, commissioners, funders to identify whether a programme or a project is worthy of (financial or other) support, and which will provide information on how to follow-up the implementation of supported programmes through evaluation activities. All information will be provided within the framework of the EDPQS.
  • A toolkit to support the programme developers, service managers and front-line practitioners to review and improve their own prevention work, based upon the EDPQS
  • A toolkit to support people who wish to promote quality in prevention to raise awareness and disseminate the EDPQS. The toolkit will contain a short introduction to the EDPQS; training materials for use in face-to-face workshops; as well as guidelines to translating, adapting and disseminating the EDPQS. A position paper will be included on the use of the EDPQS with respect to a shared vision of high quality drug prevention.

The three toolkits are going through many stages of development, review, and refinement based on the initial consultation, as well as comments and feedback from the Partnership. Most importantly, the toolkits are being developed, redrafted and refined on the basis of consultations with and feedback from stakeholders in each of the countries involved as well as other potential users of the toolkits.

This major “toolkit phase” of the Project has meant a great deal of work and committed input by Partners. As an example, what might appear as the simple task of developing a two-page summary of the EDPQS project as an element of one of the toolkits is now in its 14th draft version following consultations with Partners and stakeholders!

Into 2015……..

2015 has arrived with three months left of the Project’s life. The toolkits are now reaching their final stage of development. They will be produced in English and in the Partner languages as appropriate (Austrian, Czech, French, Greek, Hungarian, Italian and Polish).

One further activity of the Project which began in 2014 but which will be implemented in 2015 is a pilot training for Commissioners and others engaged in the prevention field. The training will be prepared as a half day, one day or two day training course and will be piloted with invited members of the prevention community in the Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Poland and the UK. The aim of the training is to raise awareness and understanding of the EDPQS among key people, particularly Commissioners, with a view to the Standards being applied in their regular work in funding, developing, reviewing or implementing prevention focused activities. Based on the feedback from the pilot training, the training materials will become an element of what will be provided as part of the Project’s “end products”.

It is the production and online publication of these “products” – the toolkits and the training pack – that will be the final part of the current EDPQS project. These will help make the work undertaken in Phase I – the initial production of the European Standards and the Project Manual – readily accessible and applied by those active in the prevention community. Our belief is that this will assist in the improvement of the quality of prevention undertaken in Europe and offer the potential for prevention activities based on sound research, good science and with the possibility of being both cost and person effective.

Watch this space…….

However, the challenge of ensuring that the Standards and their “products” are implemented and used in countries throughout Europe remains. Raising awareness, disseminating available materials and providing training will be the task of a Phase III… if or when it happens! Watch this space!