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Community Alcohol Partnerships help reduce underage drinking

Community Alcohol Partnerships (CAP) is a Community Interest Company (CIC) that involve a multiagency approach to reduce alcohol related harm to young people, improve their physical and mental health and wellbeing and enhance their communities. There are a number of CAPs in Cumbria, including in Barrow, Longtown, Millom, Egremont and Maryport and CADAS are involved with most of these, including our CEO, Leigh, chairing Millom CAP that was launched earlier this year. Partners usually include local councils, police, licenced premises, healthcare providers, schools and youth groups and other community groups looking to improve their local area.

(Above: Andrew Leaper, CAP Board Member presents representatives of Copeland CAP with ‘The Most Improved Locality’ award at a ceremony held at the House of Lords:

CAPs aim to provide alcohol-free activities for young people by working with community and youth groups who can organise these activities. These help to keep young people off the streets and being tempted to engage in anti-social behaviour that often occurs as a result of excessive alcohol consumption.

Additionally, local schools are encouraged to be proactive in the CAP to ensure they are providing sufficient alcohol education and are teaching emotional resilience to enable young people to make appropriate decisions about alcohol and drug use, anti-social behaviour and how to respond to peer pressure.

The CAPs also act as a source of support and advice for retailers and pubs in managing antisocial behaviour, preventing the sale of alcohol to young people under the age of 18 and reducing ‘proxy’ sales, where an adult purchases alcohol for those who are underage, as this severely impacts on antisocial behaviour in the community and the health and wellbeing of the young people.

Barrow was the first CAP to be launched in Cumbria in 2017 and since then the scheme has grown and achieved much success. At the national CAP awards held at the House of Lords in 2020, Barrow CAP was awarded ‘CAP of the Year’, Longtown CAP was ‘CAP of the Year in England’ and Copeland won ‘Most Improved Locality Award’.

If you believe your constituents and community would benefit from a CAP, please contact our CEO, Leigh Williams, on 077147 66658 or speak to your neighbourhood policing team.












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