Could you pass a “drug test”? Campaign against substance abuse

heroin useThe Partnership for Drug-Free Kids  (“Partnership”), a national nonprofit in New York that provides support and guidance to families struggling with their son or daughter’s substance use, has unveiled “Drug Test,” a new social engagement tool that brings to life the questions of its new “Fried Egg 2016” campaign. Available on drugfree.org, test takers can check their understanding of today’s teen drug landscape and share their results through social media.

Founded in 1986, the Partnership is a resource for families seeking to understand and get help for a child’s substance use disorder. Created by Blink Worldwide, a global brand enablement agency, “Drug Test” is the Partnership’s newest tool to help educate and inform parents and other adults about teen drug use.

“For three decades, we’ve worked to give parents tools and resources that can help them take action, and now we’re even more equipped to support families who seek better outcomes for a loved one who is struggling with addiction,” said Marcia Lee Taylor, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Partnership. “Our aim is always to help parents and children connect on this critical health issue in open, honest ways. In today’s increasingly online world, we want ‘Drug Test’ to be a shareable, social tool that initiates critical conversations and prompts queries for more information.”

The test is designed to engage social media users with the provocative “Fried Egg 2016” campaign, which was unveiled last month with television and radio public service announcements (PSAs). Like the PSAs, “Drug Test” asks topical questions about teen drug use. Test takers are encouraged to share their results on social media and “pay it forward” with a donation to the Partnership. “Drug Test” is free social tool, and test takers are encouraged, but are under no obligation to donate.

The Partnership relies on donations from individuals and organizations to keep its tools and resources on substance use, addiction and recovery accessible and free to anyone in need.

“Our issue has become increasingly complex over the last 30 years. Young adults in the 80s gravitated to cocaine, then Ecstasy in the 90s and today we’re dealing with a heroin crisis and unprecedented prescription drug abuse,” said Taylor. “Though the drugs being abused among teens have changed, their risky behaviors have not.”

drug use

Could You Pass A Drug Test?

Using the “Fried Egg 2016” campaign imagery and language as a springboard, the five-question “Drug Test” assesses whether parents and other influencers are equipped to respond appropriately to tough questions from teens and young adults. Test takers are given the correct answers, along with additional information and statistics on drug use trends. They are also encouraged to explore and download other free resources on drugfree.org.

For example:

“Why is heroin so addictive?
A.    People just have a harder time saying no to it.
B.    It only becomes addictive when used with a needle.
C.    Heroin users can quickly develop a dependence to it, and experience painful withdrawal symptoms when use is reduced or stopped.

Correct answer: C. Over time, the body adapts to the presence of heroin and other opioids (like OxyContin, Percocet, Fentanyl and other prescription pain medications), creating a tolerance and physical dependence on them. This means more of the drug is needed to produce the same effects and that painful withdrawal symptoms can occur when use is reduced or stopped. Dependence on heroin can occur no matter how it is introduced, whether it is injected into a vein or muscle, snorted or smoked. The cycle of dependence and addiction that results is difficult to break and requires specialized treatment. Learn more about the current opioid and heroin epidemic.”

“Drug Test” incorporates Blink Worldwide’s proprietary approach to digital analytics to help the Partnership better address gaps in knowledge about drug use trends among adolescents.

“When kids ask questions about drugs and parents consistently come up short on answers, something needs to change,” said Adam Smith, Partner and Chief Creative Officer at Blink Worldwide. “Sharing your ‘Drug Test’ results online can break through the chatter of a typical social media feed and prompt more people to engage on one of the most important issues facing families today.”

The complete “Drug Test” can be accessed at drugfree.org/drugtest.

30 Years of Support for Families

Since its inception, the Partnership has played a vital role in advancing and translating the science of substance use and addiction across multiple platforms. Though widely known for its awareness-driving PSAs, the Partnership’s efforts include working alongside families online, in communities and on Capitol Hill to advocate for greater understanding and more effective programs to treat the disease of addiction.

The Partnership offers resources and guidance through its Parent Support Network, a support system grounded in the evidence-based principles of motivational interviewing, as well as in the principles of CRAFT (Community Reinforcement and Family Training). This includes:

  • 1-855-DRUGFREE, a bilingual, toll-free hotline for families who want to talk to trained and caring parent support specialists about a child’s drug use or drinking
  • Intervention and treatment resources available at drugfree.org, including practical tools, support and guidance from experts and other parents through stories, blogs, guides and eBooks
  • Parent-to-parent peer coaching

The Partnership is also actively advocating for full funding of the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), the most all-encompassing piece of federal legislation to address substance abuse in years.

“Substance use and addiction knows no political or socio-economic boundaries – it is a devastating issue that affects millions of families across the nation,” said Taylor. “As we enter into our fourth decade, we remain steadfast in our commitment to help protect the health of millions of young people.” – USNewswire

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