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Manga 2018

AN ALCOHOL awareness themed Manga drawing project, aimed at 13-24 year-olds, has returned for the school holidays.

The Create a Comic project, organised by Reading Council’s Community Alcohol Partnership Officer, will offer arty activities for young people, in a bid to raise awareness of the dangers of alcohol consumption. It previous ran in 2017 and is back by popular demand.

The free workshops, starting in August, will be run by Reading artist Stephanie O’Brien. It will enable young people to create their own manga style comic strip/story based around the theme of alcohol awareness.

A Facebook and Instagram group ‘Diverted U18’ will offer daily updates, drawing guidance and competitions to engage and guide young members – so those taking part can access the tutorials wherever they are during the holidays.

Stephanie will lead the weekly drop in sessions in Reading every Monday during August, where young people can go for face to face guidance with their art projects. However there is no need to attend the drop in sessions to take part.  At the end of the project, those taking part will have a comic strip/book they have created themselves.

The workshops run on Monday 6th, 13th, 20th, and 27th August at Reading Central Library (Level 3) from 12.30 – 1.30pm. Under 24s only but if participants are under 13, they will need parental/guardian permission.

Cllr Jason Brock, Lead Member for Consumer Services, said: “I’m delighted we’ve been able to again support this project, which provides an excellent opportunity to raise awareness of the dangers of alcohol. It is vital that messages about the responsible use of alcohol are brought home to young people in an accessible way and so creating art work they can share with their peers is an excellent idea.

“This project will provide a fun but educational diversionary activity for young people in Reading during the summer holidays. It is particularly important we offer activities that aren’t necessarily sport orientated for young people who would prefer to be creative. We know that under-18s are particularly vulnerable to damage caused by alcohol. Hopefully this will keep a number of young people engaged throughout the holiday period as well as making them aware of health and well-being messages.”



Manga tutorials can be accessed via Facebook: @DivertedU18  www.facebook.com/DivertedU18 

Instagram: DivertedU18

Community Alcohol Partnership (CAP)

More than 160 CAPs around the UK bring together retailers, local authorities, police, schools, neighbourhood groups and other stakeholders to tackle the problem of underage drinking and associated anti-social behaviour. See www.communityalcoholpartnerships.co.uk for more information. 


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A vital part of the CAP’s work has been engaging with young people, getting them involved in the campaign and building their trust. The CAP held engagement nights with local young people to discuss the issue of underage drinking and anti-social behaviour. They told us there was nothing for them to do – the community centre had no funding, access to the sports field had been cut off and there were very few facilities for young people. So far CAP has held community events, reopened access to the sports field, cleared the discussed BMX track and held street art sessions. Working hard to engage with this traditionally difficult-to-reach group has been key to our success.

Scott Adams
Cumbria Constabulary

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