About CDATs

Safer, healthier, stronger communities

Community Drug Action Teams (CDATs) aim to make their local communities safer, healthier and stronger by reducing the harms associated with the use of alcohol and other drugs through evidence-based, primary prevention activities.

Contact CDATs
Community Working Together


The NSW CDAT brings people together to make a meaningful and positive difference in peoples’ lives.

Get Involved

Community Working Together


Work shoulder-to-shoulder with some of the most enthusiastic, talented, knowledgeable and dedicated people you’ll ever encounter!

Get Involved

How CDATs work

For over 20 years volunteer groups made up of community members, staff from Local Health Districts and representatives from other government and non-government agencies, have been organising primary prevention activities and developing resources aimed at strengthening their communities.

Frequently asked questions

What is a CDAT?

Community Drug Action Teams arose from the NSW Drug Summit 1999, as a way to bring together community members and government. Each CDAT builds a network with key service providers in their region where they collaborate to develop, design, and deliver activities that positively impact their specific community.

Why do we need CDATs?

CDATs achieve outcomes based on the needs specific to their community by delivering activities that aim to build protective factors and reduce risk factors. Over 50 CDATs deliver targeted harm minimisation and primary prevention activities across NSW each year.

What do CDATs do?

CDATs play an important role in building community resilience by providing a platform where people can come together and work to address a common concern.

CDATs initiate action on locally relevant concerns that identify AOD (alcohol and other drug) trends and behaviors in their community. CDATs provide and distribute evidence-based alcohol and other drug information, resources, and links within their communities.

Who can join a CDAT?

Anyone can join a CDAT. Members can include community members such as parents or youth and also community organisations, local council members and those from not-for-profit agencies.

A CDAT is a group within a community made up of individuals who are concerned about alcohol and drug use. They are informal groups comprised of but not limited to, community members, representatives from various government agencies, not-for-profits and non-government agencies. CDAT members have a passion for their community and public promotion and are happy to volunteer their time to reduce alcohol & drug harms.

To get involved or find your local CDAT, click here.

What might a CDAT focus on?

CDATs provide community with the opportunity to access AOD information, education, support, and resources. They focus on whatever they feel is most important for their region. CDATs also work to support their community to make informed decisions around their overall health and wellbeing. CDATs have a history of enhancing community outcomes through shared resources, equipment, and through activities they deliver.

Do CDATs actually make a difference?

The NSW Drugs and Community Action Strategy, Evaluation Report (August 2004), NSW Premiers Department evaluated that CDATs had a massive local impact for the communities they worked with.

CDATs assist communities to develop new skills that address AOD concerns, offer training and link community to resources.

What kind of activities do CDAT provide?

CDAT activities are evidence-based that target specific groups, issues or address AOD issues as a whole within their community. CDAT activities may focus on a certain drug in a specific community or provide broad information and awareness building campaigns that aim to increase knowledge across a population.

To see examples of activities being run across NSW, visit our News page.

What does a CDAT member do?

CDATs are local teams made up of volunteers who participate in regular face-to-face or online meetings to discuss ideas, activities and AOD concerns. Your role in the CDAT will depend on your capacity, and that of other CDAT members. CDAT roles include a Chairperson, Secretary and Auspice liaison /Treasurer and general members.
For more information on what a CDAT does, see our ‘Framework for Action’ document.

What are the different roles in a CDAT?

All roles within the CDAT are essential, however there is 4 main roles within a CDAT, which include: Chair (assist with the running of the meetings by guiding and directing conversation), Secretary (planning meeting agenda items and taking minutes), Treasurer (track budgets and liaise with the auspicing body to manage funds).

How do CDATs fund their projects?

The CDAT program is managed by a consortia that is led by Odyssey House NSW and funded by NSW Health.

CDATs are supported by Community Development Officers to plan and develop eveidence-based primary prevention harm minimisation activities.

CDATs are then supported to submit an annual funding request.

Can CDAT members access training?

Supporting CDAT members to build their knowledge, awareness, and ability to deliver evidence-based activities is our priority. We provide opportunities that explain what primary prevention is, identify drug trends and to recognise emerging drug concerns and way they can confidently grow their membership.

Training programs run across the state to assist the CDATs. They include:
What is Primary Prevention
Drug Trends and Emerging Drugs
Importance of Family Drug Support.