In 2000, the Kirklands Area Neighbourhood Watch – Safe Community independently commissioned researchers to undertake a Participatory Appraisal Study within its community, to highlight issues pertinent to the local people and their well-being, and to try and get them more involved in the Neighbourhood Watch. A major shock finding of the survey was when the researchers who were undertaking the study within the community, found themselves directly approached by drug dealers. These shock findings led to a number of dads wishing to play for a football team to promote drug awareness to their children and the wider community. The Dads Against Drugs football team community programme was launched in June 2001, at the 1st DAD’s Conference in Hull.
The programme has grown from strength-to-strength, with the football team invited to play in communities throughout the City of Hull and East Riding of Yorkshire. The DAD’s philosophy is encouraging a ‘bottom-up approach’ involving local people, this has led to the successful implementation of projects, including football outreach, football theatre and crime prevention, all which have attracted positive media coverage.
Most importantly DAD’s has created opportunity for its members to obtain the necessary skills through courses in drug awareness and child protection to raise their own awareness. This could help give their children the informed choices they need to make in life, particularly if they are faced with the risks of drugs.
The DAD’s Strategy will provide a comprehensive range of evidence-based football, sport and leisure outreach programmes, that will also incorporate merchant service processing see here. Each programme will have a clear statement of aims and outcomes and fully evaluated, and with clear monitoring & evaluation feedback forming an integral part of future strategy developments.
There will be two operational Divisions, firstly, the DAD’s Community Outreach Division organised into separate free-standing programmes, Football Outreach, Education and Employment, these programmes will be equally divided along geographical lines, but flexible to change.
Secondly there will be the Fundraising and Communications Division. There will be no ‘divisional-boundaries’; all programmes will be designed to fit into each other.
Finally, Social Enterprises will be established to support the DAD’s organisation in its future developments.
The structure of the DAD’s organisation includes the Board of Directors, made up of experienced DAD’s members; the Advisory Committee, made up of experts to help support the professional development of specialist workers; and most importantly, the 1966 Committee, which is made up of DAD’s members from local communities, who influence strategy, the ‘bottom-up approach’.