The Concerned Communities Coalition:
Together keeping youth alcohol- and drug-free
Dainfern College is a signatory to the Concerned Communities Coalition (CCC) - an organisation of South African schools working together to find ways to address our increasing concern for the teenagers we teach.
Recent scientific research tells us that brain development is a life-long process and that the teenage brain undergoes important transformations related to the ability to plan, problem solve, inhibit inappropriate impulses and integrate feelings with thinking – these characteristics are important for successful adulthood. However, these same brain regions are particularly sensitive to alcohol and other drugs during the teenage years.
Research also tells us that the younger a person is when introduced to alcohol, the more likely it is that he or she will become addicted. If a person begins drinking alcohol at the age of 15, that individual is four times more likely to develop an alcohol dependence than those who begin at age 21.
Our children are at risk as never before as they are targeted in the marketing of a growing variety of alcohol products and licensed clubs and venues in an increasingly confused society around the issue of teenage drinking. School research indicates that children are drinking regularly at younger and younger ages and that the amount of alcohol consumed by teenagers is increasing.
A group of schools in the Cape initiated the idea that schools should work in partnership with parents to raise awareness of the concerns around alcohol and teenage drinking. Schools in the Cape joined in a coalition and approached parents to work together with schools to find ways of dealing with the challenges of teenage drinking.
St John’s College in Gauteng then called for interested schools to work together on what is now called ‘The Concerned Communities Coalition’ (CCC). There was a fantastic response from schools (see CCC Charter for a list of schools who are involved in this venture) and ISASA and the GDE have endorsed the initiative.
Launch at Dainfern College
Dainfern College launched this initiative in May 2009.We invited parents of Grade 8, 9 and 10 students to join us in a partnership by signing the Pact that asks parents to comply with a number of minimum standards around alcohol. An informative booklet detailing information, concerns and support around alcohol and teenagers was also made available.
The idea of the CCC is that it is a partnership of concerned parents and schools working together to try and keep our children drug- and alcohol-free. It serves as a resource and a partnership for parents and schools.
Click here to view the CCC brochure about teenagers and alcohol.
Click here to view the CCC Alcohol Pact. Once signed, this Pact should be handed in to your child’s House Tutor or House Director.
For further information please contact our School Counsellor Ms Lynne Ryan.