Information for Professionals

Alongside the direct work with young people and support provided to families, the Young Peoples' Drug & Alcohol Team (YPDAAT) also offers support and advice to professionals working with young people in St Helens on issues relating to substance use. 

What we do

St Helens YPDAAT provides specialist drug and alcohol support to young people, aged up to 19 from the St Helens area. 

We offer the following services to young people:

  • Comprehensive assessment
  • Individual care plans (considering the needs, views and wishes of young people)
  • Psycho-social interventions
  • Awareness raising and education
  • Prescribing services
  • Harm reduction information 
  • Support to reduce/become abstinent
  • Health assessment with a school nurse
  • Nicotine Replacement Therapy
  • Sexual Health interventions
  • Referrals/signposting to other agencies
  • A flexible and friendly approach


Young people and families can self refer by contacting the service directly and speaking with a member of the team.  Any professional wanting to refer a young person into the service should discuss their concerns with the young person and their carers (as appropriate), and complete a referral form Referrals can only be made with the consent of the young person.  For more advice on when to refer, or if you require further guidance, please do not hesitate to contact us at ypdaat@sthelens.gov.uk 


Support to Professionals

Most young people who try substances, or want more information on substances, will not need to work directly with YPDAAT, so we offer training and advice to help you ensure that all young people in St Helens have access to credible, factual and reliable information to help them make informed choices. 

If you have concerns about a young person you are working with and would like to speak to a member of the team, for further advice or support, please contact us.

To find out more about the role of YPDAAT and our referral processes, why not attend one of our Information Mornings.  These are held on the last Wednesday of every month, at 10am and are currently being delivered via Microsoft Team.

To book one of these sessions email ypdaattraining@sthelens.gov.uk.  Alternatively we can provide in house training or briefings to your staff team.  Please complete our Group/Training Request Form and email it to ypdaattraining@sthelens.gov.uk and a member of the team will contact you.  


We offer a range of free training in conjunction with St Helens Safeguarding Children Board, specifically aimed at professionals working with young people and families in the St Helens area. The sessions below are currently being delivered online via Microsoft Teams.

To book on to the training please click on the Eventbrite link.

Feedback from our training

"Very informative, with up - to - date information."

"Very knowledgeable on the subject, very clear and offered the opportunity to engage and ask questions"

"Excellent speakers, very informative, I enjoyed the training and would recommend it to my peers"


Keep Off the Grass
A 60 minute briefing aimed at all professionals working with young people who use cannabis. The session will focus on:
building knowledge around the nature and impacts of young people's cannabis use; 
explore the harms cannabis use can cause; and provide insight into the risks associated with Spice and other synthetic cannabinoids.


Pills, Thrills & Spills
An in depth look at the use and misuse of party drugs, with a specific focus on ecstasy, ketamine and New Psychoactive Substances (formerly known as Legal Highs).  
This session will dispel some of the myths surrounding NPS and explore the changing nature of young people's drug use, as well as  considering impacts of use on young people, and associated risks.


Fast & Furious
A 60 minute briefing focused on cocaine use, considering the impacts on the brain, potential for addiction and health risks associated with use.


Boozed & Confused
A 60 minute briefing exploring the impacts of young people's alcohol use, identifying reasons for use, impacts of excessive use on both the individual and society, and considering appropriate harm reduction messages. 


Information Mornings
Briefing sessions from YPDAAT, TAZ outreach team and Youth Offending Service (YOS) providing an overview of the services we offer. Ideal for new members of staff, students or those who need a refresher.

Group Work

YPDAAT offers a wide range of group sessions providing general awareness or targeted information to groups of young people.  Some examples include awareness sessions with services such as Young Carers, the Youth Service, Youth Offending Service, Schools and Alternative Education Providers. 

Alongside bespoke sessions tailored to the needs of your group, YPDAAT can offer a range of programmes focused on improving resilience, a key factor in supporting young people to make healthy choices in the face of peer influence.

Life Matters is targeted at Key Stage 3 pupils to delay/prevent substance misuse, raise awareness and enhance resilience.  This programme can be tailored to meet the needs of other groups.  For more information download the course outline.

The Girls Group is a 6-week programme targeting young women, and including information on substance misuse, sexual health and CSE; alongside relationships, body image and mindfulness. 

To request group work from the team, please complete our Group/Training Request Form and email it to ypdaat@sthelens.gov.uk.


Resources and Information

YPDAAT has a range or resources professionals can borrow to support delivery of drugs education to young people.  Please contact us to arrange to loan our resources and for ideas of activities you can deliver.  We also produce fact sheets on a range of substances that can be used to enhance your own knowledge or given directly to young people.  Further information in relation to drugs/alcohol can also be obtained via the Talk to Frank website.