Portage Beaconsfield staff members and residents have participated in several community outreach initiatives recently to help prevent substance abuse among youth.
On April 19, 2011, Portage was invited by Batshaw Youth and Family Centres to be a key presenter at their Community Resource Fair at Mountainview High School. Staff members and two residents set up a rotating workshop and presentation to address high school students at risk, as well as other community partners. Portage spent forty five minutes with each group, engaging them in interesting and informative question and answer periods.
On May 13, 2011, Portage was invited by teachers in the Health Program at Kuper Academy to speak to students in grades five and six about the early warning signs of drug and alcohol abuse. Three Portage Beaconsfield residents and a staff member spoke to the group of over one hundred students, who participated in a lively question and answer period. The sixteen-year old presenters from Portage were surprised by the types of questions they were receiving from these young children, who seem to already know quite a bit about drugs and alcohol even though they were not yet in high school. The school had requested that the presentation be given to this age group and very much appreciated Portage’s collaboration.