20 May
Illawarra Aboriginal Medical Service Drug Kit Donation

Pictured above:
Leanne Lawrence - CST Manager (Community Services Team),
Jodie Hutchinson - AOD Worker,
Nina Cass, Indigenous Student Liaison Officer CSU,
Lili Ceric, Centre for Customs & Excise Studies CSU,
Julie Booker – CEO.

The Centre for Customs and Excise Studies (CCES) at Charles Sturt University (CSU) is helping to combat illicit drug use in the Illawarra region of NSW.

The CSU Centre for Customs and Excise Studies in Canberra is the world's leading provider of training and education in the highly specialised area of customs and border management. It recently donated its comprehensive Drug Identification Kit and Drug Information DVD to the Illawarra Aboriginal Medical Service (IAMS).

The Head of the Centre for Customs and Excise Studies, Professor David Widdowson, said the drug identification kits were developed primarily to support the work of enforcement agencies such as police and customs, but are now extensively used in drug awareness programs by education departments and community groups.

"Charles Sturt University's motto 'For the Public Good' reflects the University's desire to contribute to society and to support others who contribute to the public good. In this context, we had no hesitation in making this donation to assist such a worthy cause," Professor Widdowson said.

The IAMS is an all-in-one community service endeavouring to better the overall health and social wellbeing of the Illawarra Indigenous community. Their services include family, crisis, alcohol and other drugs and sexual health counselling, as well as free dental and health services in their Wollongong and Dapto locations in NSW.

A representative of the Centre for Customs and Excise Studies, Ms Lili Ceric, and Ms Nina Cass, a CSU Indigenous student liaison officer, formally presented the Drug Identification Kit and Drug Information DVD to the IAMS team at their Dapto office. Ms Jodie Hutchinson, alcohol and other drugs worker at the IAMS, will use the kit and DVD as teaching aids to educate patients and the wider community.

The CCES Drug Identification Kit consists of more than 30 simulated drug samples designed to assist with visual identification of illicit substances. Each sample is packaged individually in a clear plastic box, with an insert reference card that provides a colour image and key information about the enclosed drug. Three sealed display boards showing 20 paraphernalia items associated with drug abuse are also included in the kit. The kit is packaged in a hard-sided, secure briefcase with a coloured identification chart and drug data sheets.

Included in this kit is an educational DVD. Key topic areas include illicit drug identification; understanding drugs and their effects; cultivation, production and trafficking.

The Centre for Customs and Excise Studies offers the Bachelor of Border Management, the only undergraduate course of its kind available entirely online, as well as postgraduate qualifications, the Graduate Certificate in Customs Administration, and the Master of Customs Administration.