ECSA Summer 2013 Workshop Themes


The impact of alcohol on injuries to children and young people and ways to effectively adapt and implement injury prevention strategies from one cultural setting to another were two key areas addressed at an expert workshop hosted by the European Child Safety Alliance.

The workshop took place on June 6 at the Cluj School of Public Health at the Babes-Bolyai University in Romania, coinciding with ECSA's biannual members' meeting. Expert representatives from more than 20 European countries were in attendance.

Alcohol greatly increases the risk of all types of unintentional and intentional injuries, including, for example, road traffic incidents, fire, drowning, falls, child maltreatment, assault and suicide. Therefore, strong policies regarding alcohol are an important part of injury prevention strategies. The fact that the problem is so cross-cutting broadens opportunities to develop multi-sectoral collaborative approaches to address alcohol's impact.

At the workshop, Joanne Vincenten, ECSA director, opened the session by illustrating the cross-cutting nature of alcohol's impact. She was followed by Morag MacKay, ECSA programme manager, who provided an overview of current alcohol policies throughout Europe based on the results of the 2012 Child Safety Report Cards developed by ECSA.

Wim van Dalen, president of the European Centre for Monitoring Alcohol Marketing, then gave an extremely informative talk from a broad European perspective, which was followed by presentations from Finland and Romania that provided specific examples of effective actions being taken in their countries to reduce alcohol's negative impact on children and youth.

After the presentations, ECSA members discussed priorities and the best options for how to raise awareness and advocate for solutions that will prevent alcohol-related injuries and harm. Joanne summarised that it was critical that strong partnerships were built at the national and European level with key alcohol prevention agencies, that evidence-based facts were used in ECSA communications and that efforts to support advocacy to influence policies and legislation were undertaken by the ECSA and its country partners.

Answering the question "How do we effectively adapt and implement successful injury prevention strategies across cultural differences?" was the topic of the afternoon. Morag started the session off by presenting examples of transfer principles, including the questions those considering transferring an intervention from one setting to another should be asking prior to taking on the task. Following that, the ECSA partners from Israel and Austria gave a panel presentation featuring an informative case example of transference of an intervention between the two countries.

The floor was then opened for discussion on the practical considerations and details to consider. The afternoon session closed with discussion of effective strategies on which ECSA members could potentially collaborate to advance in relevant settings across Europe.

Presentations at the expert workshop

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