Community Drugs Programme

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Widening participation, working in partnership with community agencies and addressing critical social issues are key elements of the Community Drugs Programme. One of three outreach programmes run by the School of Social Policy, Social Work and Social Justice, the Community Drugs Programme delivers NFQ Level 7 Certificate and Diploma programmes in partnership with Merchants Quay Ireland and Urrus, Ballymun. Students come from a range of backgrounds and communities and it is this diversity that provides a rich and generative learning environment for students.

Many of the Community Drugs Programme graduates go on to work in communities most affected by drugs within Ireland, utilising the skills and knowledge they have gained through their studies, to respond to the social issues that have affected them, their families or their friends or wider social networks. Others choose to study for one of the programme awards because of the level ofproblematic substance use they are dealing with in their professional lives as youth workers, social care workers or Gardai, to mention a few.

Graduates of the Diploma awards can pathway directly onto the second year of the Bachelor of Social Science, an option over twenty students have taken since 2010. This pathway opens up the opportunity of undergraduate study to under-represented groups and underscores UCD’s commitment to encourage access to third level study for talented students regardless of their background. Many of our recent progression route graduates have gone on to post-graduate study within UCD and other Universities. Mentoring is a further feature of the Community Drugs Programme, and our post-graduate students take an active role in supporting progression students onto the Degree programme and inputting into the Diploma modules.