Potters Bar youngsters told it's not cool to drink

PUBLISHED: 06:57 04 February 2009 | UPDATED: 21:02 26 October 2009

Youngsters on the course take a close look at just what comes out of a cigarette.

Youngsters on the course take a close look at just what comes out of a cigarette.

YOUNGSTERS under the age of 15 should never have alcohol, even in small quantities. That's according to England's chief medical officer, Sir Liam Donaldson, who this week said children who drink were at risk of 'serious harm'. The statement co-incided wit

YOUNGSTERS under the age of 15 should never have alcohol, even in small quantities.

That's according to England's chief medical officer, Sir Liam Donaldson, who this week said children who drink were at risk of "serious harm".

The statement co-incided with the end of a course in Potters Bar, in which young people learned about the consequences of drinking alcohol, taking drugs, and the resulting anti-social behaviour and the effect on their own health and safety.

The alcopop scheme lasted for six weeks and was aimed at adolescents who are known to drink or are at risk of becoming involved in drinking.

The course, in which 12 teenagers took part, was run by Hertfordshire Constabulary's Hertsmere community safety unit.

Anti-social behaviour officer Ami Jeffrey said: "It is about giving young people choices by educating them about the effects, and legal consequences of irresponsible drinking.

"It is also about making sure they are safe and not involved in anti-social behaviour either as a victim or as an offender."

Ami, who helped organise the Friday night meetings, added: "The young people learned about an array of topics.

"They were educated about the effects different substances can have on the mind and body and how taking them could affect later life, in terms of gaining employment, travelling and friendships."

A narrow boat trip was organised following an earlier course in Borehamwood and a trip to London has been arranged for the Potters Bar group.

She said: "After completion of the Borehamwood course, none of the young people had been stopped by police or had alcohol confiscated from them or been involved in any reports of anti-social behaviour.

"It is hoped that the same results are found following this course.

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