“Prevention Map” Meeting Takes Place in Washington, DC

With the aim of discussing outstanding issues concerning the prevention area of the drug demand reduction effort, a meeting took place in Washington, DC hosted by OAS/CICAD. The focus of the meeting was to consider the concept of creating a “Prevention Map” that could be developed and offered through ISSUP as part of the Professional Development section of its website.

The need for such a “Map” arose from previous discussions by experts in the prevention field. The meeting in DC allowed specific time to be given to identifying what such a “Map” could provide and for whom. The event was attended by a significant group of international experts in the field, including organisation representation from INL, OAS/CICAD, Colombo Plan, SAMHSA, UNODC, ICUDDR, GCCC, APSI and ATTC – as well as ISSUP and two of its National Chapters. Overall, there was general agreement that building a guide to help those working in the prevention field including practitioners, policymakers, professionals and decision-makers would be beneficial.

The Map would aim to provide a route for building professional expertise and gaining access to important information. It would direct people to alternative routes for accessing training and resources provided by the international prevention community. Furthermore, it would guide people to other important websites and material that would help address the needs of different people at different levels of their development to encourage informed prevention activities in countries around the world. An important focus of the meeting was to ask what the “prevention consumer” required in order to make sense of what was required and what was “on offer” in the prevention field.  The meeting also allowed Brian Morales from INL to share the strategic plan for INL’s prevention work in the years ahead. The “Prevention Map” was seen as something that would add value to the proposed strategy. The task is now for ISSUP to create the Map with the help and support of those who attended the meeting and others who offered support from a distance as well as from others who will receive the call for help and advice in due course!