We encourage Local Drug Action Teams to link with existing programs that have been shown to work.

Existing or new projects

A critical early decision for your group is whether to link in with existing programs that provide social activities, healthcare information and support appropriate to older people in your community, or to develop your own project.

A selection of existing programs is listed below:

  • Lions, Rotary and Apex Clubs
    Rotary Australia also have information on volunteer avenues.

  • Men’s Sheds, and Women’s Sheds
    • Women’s Sheds and Men’s Sheds are gender-specific community development organisations. They offer activities that promote social inclusion, upskilling and information sharing.
    • Men’s Sheds are becoming a lot more popular, with more than 1,000 running across Australia.
    • Women’s Sheds aren’t currently as prominent as Men’s Sheds, though there are some good regional examples, such as Wangarang Women’s Shed.
    • The Country Women’s Association provides volunteering and community building opportunities in urban, regional and remote areas.

You may find other programs through local health services, peak bodies and by drawing on local knowledge and networks. There may be a number of existing programs already in place in your community that you can support and build on.

Existing programs may have an alcohol and other drug focus, or possibly a different overall focus such as preventing falls in the elderly, promoting appropriate use of medicines, or enhancing mental wellbeing. Be mindful to look outside the alcohol and other drug sector, as programs that target older people may be working towards other health and social outcomes.

Due to the limited number of quality programs available, and the need for tailored approaches, many Local Drug Action Teams (LDATs) will work with community organisations to develop and deliver a targeted program for their community.

Setting objectives

Setting objectives for your Community Action Plan is an important part of the planning process.

Some example objectives for ‘Alcohol, Other Drugs and Older People’ are provided below. Groups can develop their own objectives, although you may find these a useful starting point:

  • Increase community awareness of AOD harms associated with ageing over the next 12 months.
  • Increase awareness and knowledge of the harms of risky drinking and drug use among older people over the next 12 months.
  • Increase opportunities for social connection over the next 12 months.
  • Improve older peoples’ sense of belonging to the community over the next 12 months.
  • Decrease risky use of substances within older people in the community over the next 12 months.
  • Establish two new partnerships with community organisations in the next 12 months.

For more information on how to formulate SMART objectives see the Set Your Objectives page.

Working with community partners

Strong partnerships are critical to your success in preventing alcohol and other drug harms in the community.

Local Drug Action Teams will work with a variety of different community partners to deliver ‘Alcohol, Other Drugs and Older People’ projects. This could include health services, Lions Clubs, local councils, and other organisations that work directly with older people.

Partners can support your action in many different ways, including providing resources and venues for activities, hosting and promoting events, and providing opportunities for volunteering and social engagement, financial support, and much more.

Your specific approach to working with older people in the community may influence the type of individuals, networks and organisations that your group partners with.

Partners may include:

  • primary health services (e.g. general practitioners, pharmacists, dentists)
  • community health centres and neighbourhood houses
  • health services and hospitals
  • local council/s
  • age-specific care providers (e.g. retirement villages, aged care facilities, home-based care providers)
  • social services (e.g. welfare or housing services)
  • libraries
  • local social venues (e.g. RSLs, bowls clubs)
  • the Department of Veteran Affairs
  • community leaders (e.g. faith leaders, sporting coaches)
  • psychological and mental wellbeing services (e.g. psychologists, psychiatrists, councillors, etc.).

Resources required

All AOD programs need to be adequately resourced. Below is an indicative list of resources required for community organisations to deliver ‘Alcohol, Other Drugs and Older people’ projects. Local Drug Action Teams may be able to provide some of these resources, or work with partners who can provide additional support.

This is not an exhaustive list and your LDAT should be mindful that the resources required will be largely influenced by the action taken by your team.


  • Basic administrative tools incl. access to stationery and office supplies, printers, phones, and a workspace for administrative duties.
  • Venue/s for meetings. In-kind use of meeting rooms from a partner organisation, library, or local council may be possible. It is not appropriate for meetings to be held in people’s homes or private venues.
  • Funds to provide catering at events and meetings. This might include basic refreshments available before and/or after the event are often sufficient (e.g. tea, coffee, water, biscuits).
  • Knowledge and resources, as well as possible funds to deliver training of staff.
  • Allocating time to liaise with community organisations (e.g. attend meetings, provide advice etc.).
  • Insurance and liability coverage (where appropriate).
  • Funds for additional activities (e.g. delivering an awareness campaign, or running a networking event).
Please get in touch to find out more about the program
Please get in touch to find out more about the program