About Planet Youth Lanark

Who we are, what we do, who we serve.

A New Way to Engage Our Youth

Planet Youth represents a new approach to measurably improving the quality of life in a community. 

It’s designed (and proven) to reduce or prevent drug and substance abuse and misuse among youth — while helping to build and strengthen communities. It was pioneered in Iceland over 20 years ago and is now in use in 27 countries worldwide.  We want to bring this approach to life – with your help – here in Lanark County.

We are partnering with leaders in education, health-care, local governments, and police services, as well as various volunteer organizations, to achieve our collective goal of enhancing the quality of life and communities by preventing drug and substance abuse and misuse. Our steering committee includes leaders and policymakers from these sectors in our communities.

Our recommendations for actions will be based on clear evidence identified and resulting from in-depth and regular student surveys, and from reviewing proven policies and best practices from other jurisdictions.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What you need to know
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Planet Youth Lanark County is not a program.  It is a new approach to identifying and establishing long-term, community-driven strategies that promote positive social and environmental change.

Some of the successful steps taken in Iceland and other countries include:

  • removing barriers to positive activities and pursuits for youth
  • bringing awareness to the public about the benefits of increased family time
  • improving lines of communication between schools, parents, community organizations and youth.

Given the alarming increase in our communities of overdoses and fatalities related to drugs, and the legalization of recreational use of cannabis, we believe a new approach is required.

Planet Youth Lanark County is gearing up to work within our communities to make a difference – to truly ‘move the needle’ on the factors that lead to substance abuse in the first place.  We believe in the power of a strong community, where people of all ages feel a sense of belonging, connection and purpose.

It’s been said that it takes a village to raise a child.  Not every community thinks or functions as a ‘village’, where there is a shared sense of responsibility for our youth and our elders.  But together, here in Lanark County, we have the ability, through these efforts, to influence how we think, function and thrive as a community.

Promise and armed with evidence-based research and proven strategies, we will work together with other community stakeholders to ensure that the future is not only full of possibilities, but yields the benefits of communities, families and individuals that grow and flourish together.

What We WILL Do

Planet Youth LANARK COUNTY will:

  • contract the 5 year Guidance Program with Planet Youth
  • facilitate the distribution of the surveys once the school boards have approved the means and method
  • distribute the data results — we propose local MDS Committees receive the reports and use the results to identify local solutions

What We Will NOT Do

Planet Youth LANARK COUNTY will NOT:

  • tell any community what they must do – your community will decide on a course of action based on the data
  • finance any project decided on by any community
  • leave any community unsupported if advice is requested

Our Communities

  • Beckwith

  • Carleton Place

  • Lanark Highlands

  • Mississippi Mills

  • Smiths Falls

  • Drummond/North Elmsley

  • Perth

  • Tay Valley Township

Our Sponsors

Planet Youth Lanark County is sponsored by the Municipal Drug Strategy Committees in Lanark County and Smiths Falls with support from our Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit, Open Doors for Lanark Children and Youth, and United Way Lanark County