School based peer education: This is the first intervention of the project wherein the SAATHI staff reaches out to Government Schools in Sikkim. The step in this process is a discussion with the Principal and teachers of the school. SAATHI staff introduces the project aims and objectives and what it seeks to achieve through the model. This includes sensitizing the schools about substance abuse in Sikkim and taking feedback from them on what is happening in their respective schools with regard to the same. Further, once the school staff consents to be a part of this project, the next components are carried out in the respective school.
Teachers training and support: This step in the project involved a one day intensive training conducted with 5 teachers from each school. This teachers shall be the coordinator for SAATHI project from the respective schools. Resource persons from medical, legal and psychological background are invited to take technical sessions focused on working with issues of substance abuse among students in school. The broader objective is to build capacities on the teachers to counsel students who are likely to come under these situations or students who are using it as a coping mechanism or identified vulnerable students who might have already been in the influence of substance. The objective of teacher's training programme should be:
Counselor and volunteer training: This steps in the process is about involving certified counselor in the project who could provide assistance and help in cases of reported substance abuse cases from the schools and also help provide assistance to the teacher coordinators or the volunteers who would like to be associated with the project. Further volunteers and organizations are also to be actively engaged in the project to assist SAATHI in programme deliverables at different levels.
Student offsite training camp: This steps in the project involves 4 days residential camp with 30 students from 1 selected school. A total of 120 students from 4 schools are taken to the IHCAE institute for a 4 days learning based interactive camp . Further, once the students are in the camp at the IHCAE, various learning based interactive sessions are done over a period of 4 days to bolster those social issues and outcomes that are most likely to strengthen and enhance youth resilience to substance abuse. The identified learning objectives through this off-site training for peer educators are:
Parental counseling: The fifth step in the project design is with the parents of students studying in the schools of Sikkim. The role of parents as primary educators can be recognized and supported by schools by working in partnerships with parent. Partnerships with parents and community help to integrate consistent and relevant health messages into home and community to improve student health and promote a greater awareness of health issues among students and their families.
Parents are important because families are a primary source of socialization and because parental opinion can either reinforce or countermand the messages of education for drug abuse prevention programmes. Parents are important also as their opinion contribute to community norms about substance use and support for education for drugs prevention. Therefore, involving parents in substance abuse prevention programme has the potential to provide parents with skills and knowledge to broach and discuss the topic of drug with their children read more......
Community outreach: Through this process, SAATHI aims to reach out to communities in Sikkim to spread awareness and sensitize the public at large about substance abuse ill effects and how communities can be empowered to take actions against these issues. It is also to seek help of communities to stop selling of drugs to children by medicine shops, curb menace of alcohol and engage with panchayat and wards through a participatory approach. This component shall be facilitated by the peer educators who shall initiate various awareness drives in the form of community meetings, dramas, skits, role plays etc in their respective communities. The main aim is to strengthen the relation between various stakeholders and garner a healthy growing environment for every child. read more......