Peer education as a means of drug prevention and education among young people: an evaluation

Ward, Jennifer ORCID logoORCID:, Hunter, Gillian and Power, Robert (1997) Peer education as a means of drug prevention and education among young people: an evaluation. Health Education Journal, 56 (3) . pp. 251-263. ISSN 0017-8969 [Article] (doi:10.1177/001789699705600305)


Peer education has become increasingly popular in Britain as a method of drug education and prevention for young people. Few initiatives nave undergone formal evaluation and the extent to which such programmes influence the drug use of young people is consequently unknown. The results from a process evaluation of a community based peer intervention are presented here. Research and evaluation took place between April 1995 and June 1996. Findings show that the intervention was successful in that drug information was disseminated to a wide cross-section of the target population including those who would Otherwise not have access to such information, for example parents and teachers. The evaluation found a considerable number of contacts made by the peer educators were through speaking to friends and distributing drug information leaflets. While it appears that contacts of this nature achieve increased levels of knowledge about drugs, it remains unclear how effective the intervention was in influencing the drug-using behaviour of young people currently involved in drug use. Until impact and outcome evaluations of peer intervention programmes have been completed, there is no clear evidence that peer education is a superior method of drug education and prevention in comparison to other approaches.

Item Type: Article
Sustainable Development Goals:
Research Areas: A. > School of Law > Criminology and Sociology
Item ID: 35177
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Depositing User: Jenni Ward
Date Deposited: 23 Aug 2022 13:00
Last Modified: 23 Aug 2022 13:00

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