The Drug Education Forum brings together drug education providers, educators and practitioners from across the UK as a Community of Practice.

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About us

We believe that every young person in the UK should have access to excellent, evidence-based, age-appropriate drug education, to enable them to make choices about drugs that are informed, independent and will prevent or reduce risk and harm.

The Drug Education Forum is led by the DSM Foundation, bringing together drug education providers, educators and practitioners from across the UK who are committed to ensuring this happens.

We aim to strengthen the sector by

  • Upholding evidence-based standards and practice based on international research.
  • Providing regular briefings, updates, sharing best practice and networking opportunities for DEF members and wider stakeholders.
  • Disseminating current information, evidence and research, and relevant legislative and policy changes to DEF members.
  • Creating and taking opportunities to strengthen evidence-based drug education through contributing to and disseminating evaluation and research.

We aim to provide a voice for the sector by

  • Advocating for access to excellent, evidence-based drug education for all young people in the UK.
  • Advocating for drug education to be at the heart of any response to drug-related harm and wider work prevention work.
  • Engaging with key stakeholders to maintain and build awareness and understanding of the importance and role of evidence-based drug education in preventing and reducing drug-related harm.
  • Responding to relevant social, legislative and policy changes and events, and on important developments in the sector.

Our principles

Our commitment to the provision of high-quality, evidence-based drug education for young people is contained in the set of ten principles below.

They apply to drug education across a range of settings, including schools and informal community settings, and are based on an international evidence base of effective practice in drug education2.

Events and activities

Briefing, updates and networking events will be provided termly, including the opportunity to hear from a range of expert speakers, and opportunities to share best practice, resources and updates from other providers.

Online forum

Ongoing sharing of best practice, resources, ideas and questions will be available – currently under development.

Leadership and governance

The DEF is led by a steering group of organisations working broadly across the drug education and harm reduction sector, with an advisory group providing expert oversight.

Contact us

For more information or to join the mailing list of DEF please contact

For media enquiries please contact

1Note: The word ‘drug’ indicates alcohol and other drugs throughout. 2European Prevention Curriculum (EMCDDA, 2019); International Standards on Drug Use Prevention (UNODC, 2018); ‘What works’ in drug education and prevention? (Scottish Government, 2015)