Written by Róisín Downes ’15, SSDP’s Global Program Coordinator
We hope you are doing well and are feeling okay during this stressful time. The COVID-19 pandemic is taking its toll on everyone. Check out this blog post for advice about staying safe as people who use drugs (PWUD) during the COVID-19 pandemic. Also, please familiarize yourself with the World Health Organisation’s advice about COVID-19.
Self-isolation and social distancing can be lonely and frustrating for some, so we thought we’d share a few ways you can stay involved with SSDP and take your mind off things:
2. Translate materials for SSDP. As you know, we have a presence in over 30 countries, so translations are much needed. If you’re interested, send firstname.lastname@example.org an email. Include the languages you speak, your level of proficiency, and roughly how much time/how many words you’d like to translate.
3. Hold a virtual meeting with your chapter. Get everyone on a call or in a chat group (check out: Whatsapp, Skype, Zoom, Facebook Messenger, etc.) and start planning! You could even take this time to learn a bit about each other and bond.
4. Request a training session. Have a specific topic you’d like to know more about? Want to build your skills and learn more? Reach out to your staff point person, and we’ll work with you to build a training session based around that topic. We can hold a group call and invite all your chapter members and other chapters to attend.
5. Help us update some of our resources. Have you ever been looking at an SSDP resource and felt it wasn’t up to date or didn’t make sense in your context? Let us know and we can work together to improve them. Have you ever wanted to make your own resource? Let us know and we can help you start working on it!
6. Make friends on SSDP Family & SSDP International. Things can get a bit lonely with all the social distancing. Why not reach out in our Facebook groups to meet new people from around the world, and maybe even take part in some group calls?
7. Read the SSDP Blog to find out what other SSDPers are up to. Want to begin planning some activities and need some inspiration? Check out our blog to see what people are doing across the world! See something really interesting? Reach out to that chapter for advice and guidance.
8. Check in with your Movement Building Fellow or Global Program Coordinator. Have you updated your staff member in a while? Looking for some guidance? Send your point person an email! If you are unsure of who your point person is, email email@example.com and we will help you connect.
9. Read our February Report Card. Learn about what happened in the network in February. You’ll also find some other cool things like recommended reading from board & staff and the times SSDPers have been in the news this month.
10. Read up on our allies and learn about what they’re up to. Here’s just a few other youth lead drug policy reform organisations you might find interesting: Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy (CSSDP), Students for Sensible Drug Policy Australia, Youth Organisations for Drug Action (YODA), YouthRISE, YouthRISE Nigeria, Y-PEER, Catalizador (Catalyst), Latinoamérica por una Política Sensata de Drogas, México, and Paradigma.
As always, stay safe, look out for one another, and don’t forget to take care of yourself.