Penington Institute raises awareness of the many ways that substance use affects us all – personally, socially and economically – and promotes policies and practices to prevent and reduce harm to people in the community. We support initiatives to engage the community in a conversation about community health and community safety.

We work to connect research to current realities and support translation into action on the ground via policy, program and service delivery.

We will continue to collaborate with, and represent, a broad range of sectors and organisations who work to minimise harm from drug use.

Our programs and campaigns

Penington Institute’s work is informed by its programs and campaigns:

  • COPE (Community Overdose Prevention and Education)
    • Penington Institute’s workforce training and support project on the overdose reversal drug naloxone
  • International Overdose Awareness Day
    • Penington Institute’s international initiative to end overdose
  • YEAH
    • Penington Institute’s national youth initiative on sexual health, alcohol and drug use
  • Understand Ice
    • Penington Institute’s initiative supporting young people at risk of ice use


Community Overdose Prevention and Education (COPE) is saving lives by supporting health professionals through prevention training. This includes providing information on and access to the overdose reversal drug naloxone to people most at risk of opioid overdose and those most likely to witness overdose.

Find out more here

International Overdose Awareness Day

Time to remember, time to act

International Overdose Awareness Day is an initiative that promotes drug overdose prevention and awareness messages and supports families who have lost loved ones to overdose.

The campaign runs throughout the year, culminating in high-profile support on 31 August when organisations all around the world run events and spread health and safety information. Most importantly, International Overdose Awareness Day allows people to come together and tackle overdose as a community.


Young and Empowered Around Health

For over a decade, YEAH firmly established itself as the national youth sexual health promotion organisation in Australia. Since 2005 YEAH has built Australia’s largest online and face-to-face engagement platform connecting young people with sexual health information and empowering them to prevent the spread of HIV and other Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) through participation and leadership.

In October 2017, YEAH became Penington Institute’s youth initiative; our program committed to empowering young people to take control of their sexual health and wellbeing by making safer choices regarding sex, alcohol and other drug use.

Understand Ice

Info, tips and advice without the BS

Understand Ice is a health promotion campaign and website that aims to support young people who are at risk of using ice or are early, recreational, or occasional users of ice, and their friends and family. The campaign aims to:

  • Encourage young people to consider and understand the impacts that their ice use is having on them
  • Give young people support and advice on things they can do if they recognise that their use use is becoming a problem
  • Provide evidence based information that gives people the knowledge and tools on how to reduce the harms of their ice use
  • Link young people and their family and friends to information, advice and referral if they wish to seek further help and support.

Donate now!

Your donation can make a difference!

You can help Penington Institute in advancing health and community safety by connecting substance use research to practical action.
Donate now!