‘Drug proofing your kids’ talk at Larne’s Market Yard

Su Finch (2nd right) from Care for the Family was guest speaker at the Irish Churches Peace Project meeting on drugs awarness in the Market Yard and is pictured with (from left) Rev Tommy Stephenson, Keith Hamilton Director of ICPP, Ann McKeown from the ICPP planning group and Eamonn McFerran ICPP Good Relations Officer. INLT 09-001-PSB
Su Finch (2nd right) from Care for the Family was guest speaker at the Irish Churches Peace Project meeting on drugs awarness in the Market Yard and is pictured with (from left) Rev Tommy Stephenson, Keith Hamilton Director of ICPP, Ann McKeown from the ICPP planning group and Eamonn McFerran ICPP Good Relations Officer. INLT 09-001-PSB
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The Church in the Marketplace Scheme has held a talk entitled “drug proofing your kids” at Larne’s Market Yard.

The talk by Care in the Family guest speaker Sue Finch aimed to educate parents and the local community on the signs of drug use and how to engage with children to discuss the topic.

Irish Churches Peace Project Good Relations officer Eamonn McFerran told The Times: “The talk is part of the eight-week Church in the Market Yard programme.

“Sue was able to show what a bong and spliff look like, she described certain drugs and gave tips about parenting. She said it was important not to turn the drugs into something like a forbidden fruit.

“It’s about sitting down and talking to kids and explaining the problems, issues and serious consequences.

“It’s also important to provide positive role models.”

Eamonn believes it is important that parents are educated on the dangers of drugs in order to be better able to deal with the problem. He continued: “There is a lot of talk about it in the Larne area with the problem of legal highs. Education is important and parents should attend talks like this.”

The drugs education talk is part of a programme of events taking part in the Market Yard as part of the eight-week pilot Church in the Market Yard programme. Eamonn continued: “We have had talks from Citizen’s Advice, Larne Foodbank, Age Concern, the Crime Prevention Officer, Warmer Homes and Home Accident Prevention and Armchair Aerobics. Everyone enjoys the talks.”

The Church in the Market Yard programme was the brainchild of Larne Clergy Group, which brings together clergy from the Presbyterian, Methodist, Catholic, Church of Ireland and non-subscribing Presbyterian churches in the Larne area. The ICPP is collaborating with the local group to facilitate the Church in the Market Yard pilot programme, which will be reviewed next week to determine whether to continue.

Eamonn continued: “The Church in the Market Yard scheme has gone really, really well from the first week. We aren’t trying to convert people, it’s about being Christian without preaching at people.”

If you would like to make a suggestion regarding an issue which you feel the Church in the Market Yard scheme could address, email: eamonn@icpp.info