I’m Katie, a student from Leeds City College. I am currently under taking a three week work placement with Getaway Girls. The reason I have chosen Getaway Girls is my goal for the future is to be a social worker. I feel like Getaway Girls would give me a good experience for the future.

In the future I am wanting to become a social worker and the area I want to work with is helping families where drugs are involved. This is because drugs within the family can have negative effects on the children and I believe that all children deserve a good start in life so they develop as a person and hopefully make the right choices as they grow.

Some of the effects family members taking drugs has on children are the child may become neglected as addiction can take up the majority of the users time. This will be damaging to children of any age as all children need support from the people around them. As well as this, addiction often leads to violence and abuse of the child, therefore effecting their mental health. Children are very impressionable, if they are constantly seeing family members using drugs they may also result to taking drugs as a coping method.

There are services all over the country that can help a person overcome addiction such as, a person’s GP or other organisations such as FRANK, which helps people to find their local drug addiction service. In some places there are services for vulnerable families to help with the prevention of people becoming an addict. The national centre on addiction and substance abuse offer advice on how to do this.

I feel that there needs to be more services to help the children affected by this because even if they don’t use drugs themselves in later life, they may still have difficulties if they weren’t given the support they need early on.  A service which provided this kind of support was FEDUP. This was a service that gave children the chance to talk to other children in their situation and build up their self-esteem. It is also a safe environment for them helping parents to see how their children were feeling. This service unfortunately no longer exists.

The issues is extremely important to me and in future I think there should be services all across the UK offering this support to children. All children have a right to feel safe in their home and have their families there to support them to avoid drug problems in the future.