Young People's Drug and Alcohol Team (YPDAAT)

Take the ACE Pledge this Alcohol Awareness Week (19-23rd November 2018)

YPDAAT are encouraging parents across St Helens to take the ACE Pledge to help reduce the harms caused by underage drinking.

Whilst research shows that increasing numbers of young people are choosing not to drink alcohol, those that do are drinking in increasingly harmful ways.  St Helens has the second highest incidence of under 18s being admitted to A&E through alcohol intoxication in the country, and most young people tell us that often their parents are aware they are drinking and even provide their alcohol. 


By taking the ACE pledge, we hope that parents will :

  • Avoid giving alcohol to their children;
  • be Clued up about their children's whereabouts at all times; &
  • Educate their children about the risks of alcohol.


We know it can be hard, and there are lots of mixed messages about the benefits of introducing alcohol to young people in a controlled family setting, and some parents think that by providing small amounts of alcohol to their child they will know how much they will be drinking.  However in reality young people can access large amounts of strong cider at 'pocket money' prices and it can be hard to know what access they get to alcohol from friends etc.


Advice from the Chief Medical Officer promotes an alcohol free childhood is the best option and that children should not have access to any alcohol at all under the age of 15. 


An article in today's Guardian states "The idea that introducing your child to alcohol, for example with a glass of wine at the dinner table, will take away the novelty and deter binge drinking is a myth, say experts. Too many people still believe that families drinking together in France keeps children safe, when actually the county’s rates of alcohol dependence and binge drinking exceed those in the UK."


There are clear links between teenage alcohol use and other vulnerabilities such as pregnancy, violence and being the victim of crime.  However, research is showing that teen drinking also affects how the brain develops and can lead to increased risk of problematic alcohol use into adulthood.


The ACE Pledge is intended to support parents with their decision to encourage an alcohol free childhood, and promote discussions with their children as to the reasons for this.


Visit the ACE Pledge page to take your pledge!



St Helens Young People's Drug and Alcohol Team (YPDAAT), provide young people and their families in St Helens with a range of interventions to help them to make informed choices around drug and alcohol use in order to achieve their full potential.

Despite what you might think, most young people chose not to use drugs or alcohol. Of those that do most young people will grow out of this without any issues.


What we do

  • We are here to help you to make healthy choices, to prevent you getting into risky situations due to drug and alcohol use.
  • We are a confidential service, working with young people aged up to 19.
  • We can offer help and support in cutting down, quitting or being safe and provide one to one sessions with your own keyworker.
  • All staff are trained in nicotine replacement therapy to help you stop smoking.  We also offer STI screening and C-Card services. 
  • We can also offer complimentary therapy sessions to help relaxation and show you other ways to chill out.

What we don't do

  • Tell you off
  • Tell your parents/carers, unless we think you are at risk of harm to yourself or others
  • Tell you should be doing
  • Make decisions about you without you knowing

What to expect

  • A friendly service
  • An initial appointment where we introduce ourselves and tell you more about what the team offers
  • The opportunity to ask any questions and tell us a bit more about what is going on for you
  • Appointments with your keyworker at suitable times and places for you
  • Support for as long as you feel you want to receive it