Community Development

Response to ICE & Other Drugs

Optimal Health Group (OHG) and the Australian Anti Ice Campaign (AAIC) ), have partnered to educate each local community on the harm associated with ICE & Other Drugs. We are rolling out the Community Development Response to ICE & Other Drugs and this has been presented at;

  • The Australian & New Zealand Addiction Conference (May 2016)
  • Australian Holistic Healers & Counsellors Association Conference (August 2016)
  • Lifeline Coordinators Conference (September 2016)
  • 12th Biennial Asia Pacific International Mental Health Conference (October 2016)
  • Australian Holistic Healers & Counsellors Association Conference (Oct 2017)
  • The Australian Lions Drug Awareness Foundation (Nov 17)
  • The Australian & New Zealand Addiction Conference (Jun 2021)

The Community Development Response to ICE & Other Drugs is also listed on the Australian & New Zealand Mental Health Association website;

With the growing drug problems in many communities holistic healers and counsellors are needing to educate themselves about services, intervention programs and health options that are available to support their clients or the town they live in. That is exactly what the Optimal Health Group (OHG) and Australian Anti Ice Campaign (AAIC) does. We provide a range of services and present public community forums to educate local communities on the harm associated with ICE and other drugs and what positive steps they can take to improve the situation.

Our aim is to empower local communities by providing sustainable resources and processes from prevention to intervention.

We begin with the public forum which provides cutting-edge education to raise awareness and insight for parents and members of the community. They are invited to be trained and these key members then come together to establish a Community Drug Action Team (CDAT) to tackle identified needs and gaps.

Examples are always a great way for people to understand the process and potential of what we are offering.  Here is what we did in the town of Yeppoon: firstly we had a forum and then invited members of the wider community to receive the dual diagnosis training.

This led to a two day Dual Diagnosis Training being delivered in Rockhampton two months later. Twenty-three people attended representing community and key service providers.

From those who attended the training selected representatives met the very next day to establish a working party in conjunction with the Primary Health Network. The following objectives were decided upon:

  1. School based drug education (Grades 7-12), offered by AAIC ( – 2 people from the CDAT will approach the high schools to enable AAIC to educate students and build on the federal and state AOD school drug initiatives through cutting-edge ICE education.
  2. Family Support Groups – 2 people from the CDAT will expand and develop more family support groups throughout the region through the resources that OHG and AAIC (nil charge).
  3. Brief and Early Interventions – 2 people from the CDAT will promote the skills from the 2 day intensive Dual Diagnosis Training (available live and online) for front line workers to expand brief and early interventions available for drug users. The 2 hour SAMHI Chemically Speaking Two (Brief Intervention) training program is also available online to help parents, coaches & club leaders, as well as workplace managers & supervises to deliver brief and early interventions as they already have rapport and a relationship with the drug user so are best place to help them weigh up the costs vs the benefits. Existing self-help groups, (such as AA / NA), as well as leaders/coaches from sporting clubs, workplaces and organisations can be trained to deliver brief and early interventions to drug users. This will include encouraging 2 teachers, student counsellors, chaplains or student guidance officers to be trained.
  4. Detoxification facilities (Detox) for the region – 2 people from the CDAT will explore resources to address this high priority needs to ensure drug users have timely access to detox and treatment services.
  5. Outpatient Treatment Services – 2 people from the CDAT will pursue resources to expand treatment services available to drug users from counselling to intensive day treatment.
  6. Residential Rehabilitation – 2 people from the CDAT will pursue resources to expand residential rehabilitation available to drug users who have not been able to recover through outpatient treatment.
  7. Transitional Housing – 2 people from the CDAT will pursue post treatment supported accommodation to help people reintegrate back into society

We are always interested in supporting more communities so feel welcome to contact us if you would like to discuss this community development strategy for your local area.

George Patriki
Optimal Health Group

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