In Romania, prevention activities are developed based on guiding principles outlined in the National Anti-Drug Strategy 2013-20 and the corresponding Action Plan for 2013-16, and are coordinated by the NAA. Activities in this field are primarily implemented by the Ministry of Education and Scientific Research and the NAA’s territorial network of 47 Drug Prevention, Evaluation and Counselling Centres, in cooperation with other governmental bodies. Nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) are key partners in the implementation of projects at the local level.
Prevention interventions encompass a wide range of approaches, which are complementary. Environmental and universal strategies target entire populations, selective prevention targets vulnerable groups that may be at greater risk of developing drug use problems, and indicated prevention focuses on at-risk individuals.
In Romania, schools are the primary setting for universal prevention activities. Standard information activities continue to play a significant part in drug use prevention; however, personal skills development and peer-based training modalities are increasingly being incorporated in universal prevention activities. For example, the project ‘Unplugged’, which focuses on the attitudes and skills of 12- to 14-year-old schoolchildren, was implemented in a district of Bucharest, and it was scaled up to the national level in 2012. In addition, numerous local schoolbased projects have been implemented; some provide information and are designed to raise awareness about the consequences of drug use while others promote alternative leisure activities for pupils.
Family prevention initiatives have mainly been implemented at the local level and aim to increase parents’ awareness of substance use risks and to strengthen the protective role of the family; however, although the number of projects in this field shows a constant increase, participation in these activities remains low. Communitybased prevention is mainly oriented towards information provision about licit and illicit substances through different campaigns.
Selective prevention is mostly targeted at youngsters in recreational and festival settings, Roma groups, the prison population, former drug users, victims of family violence and young adults leaving care.
Following a successful pilot of the EU-wide project FreD goes net an ‘early intervention’ project with young people who have come to the attention of police, work or school because of drug use — the initiative is now carried out nationwide in collaboration with the local Drug Prevention, Evaluation and Counselling Centres. Indicated prevention interventions remain isolated and rare.
Provision of interventions in schools in Romania (expert ratings)
NBYear of data 2015.