After a pandemic that changed life as we knew it, and amongst fires and floods that further isolated this small rural community there was a real need and want for the community and families to connect socially… with this in mind, that’s exactly what the Bellingen CDAT team did.

Food trucks were brought in, the big screen was put up with a movie for the young ones, a live band to get people on up on the dance floor, and the invitation was extended to local services to come and mingle with local folk to provide information and be there for informal conversations that point people in the right direction if they were in need of a bit of extra help that was shaped into a wonderful community gathering bring approximately 170 out of their homes to enjoy each other’s company all void of alcohol.

Participants were asked a few questions about what they liked about the event. It was also a great opportunity to ask if they had increased their awareness of alcohol and other drugs, having the standard drink measurement postcards on hand, which which many hadn’t know about previously, resulted in the majority of people indicating that ‘Yes’ it had increased their knowledge.

What we achieved
• In the lead up to the event, posters were placed around town. Informative postcards were printed with standard drinks measurements, and that instigated a conversation around alcohol awareness.
• Social media was a big part of this event, where people and the food trucks we were using, shared the event. 500
• Posters were also included in the run of the local newspaper, Don Dorrigo Gazette.
• The Local team wore CDAT team t shirts so were easily identifiable in the crowd.
• Participants were given a phone wallet, after completing the roving survey, and in that time discussion about alternative options to AOD were talked about.
• We steered almost every conversation to awareness and how to seek help.