A new community partnership to tackle underage drinking and alcohol abuse in Dinnington has been launched this week.
The Community Alcohol partnership (CAP) will see retailers, councils, police, schools and the community working together to tackle the problem.
Just under two years ago the South Yorkshire Rural Network declared parts of Dinnington to be in the top 10 per cent most deprived areas in the country.
And since then work has been going on behind the scenes to find out why.
“Dinnington was identified as one of the most needy communities in Rotherham,” said Andrea Peers, area partnership manager for Rotherham Council.
“It was declared an area of disadvantage and we have been looking at ways to tackle that.”
“We held events and asked what it was like for people in the area and what issues they faced. And one of the most prevalant issues that came up was alcohol.”
The CAP initiative will centre around the three main themes of education, enforcement and public perception.
There will be training and support for local retailers to tackle the sale of alcohol to underage drinkers, as well as education in scho0ls about the dangers of drinking.
But excessive drinking is not just a problem with young people.
Inspector Nick Gaskel said people are more aware of young people drinking, as they do it out in the open.
But alcohol is also an issue for older people, with drinking often taking place behind closed doors where the problem goes unnoticed.
Sharon Cope, a community outreach worker with alcohol service Lifeline, added: “It is all about promoting safe drinking and raising alcohol awareness in Dinnington.”
Lifeline is running a drop in service twice a week at the Salvation Army and Dinnington Children’s Centre. Call 01709 364804 for more.