FAQ – frequently asked questions

Q: What is the connecting PINS project?
A: There are already a few initiatives to connect harm reduction organizations in Europe, like NEWNET/NEWIP and Safer Nightlife. While these initiatives are invaluable to share (policy) knowledge in Europe these meetings are on an administrative level. At the peer-to-peer level there have been a few smaller projects, but these earlier projects do not exist anymore or are specializing on different aspects of the harm reduction work. As peers are the first contact for many users with harm reduction organizations it is deemed important to also create a platform for peers to connect with each other and share knowledge.
This is where this project comes in. The PINS project is an EU Erasmus project initiated by DrogArt (Slovernia). The other organizations that are active participants are: Checkin (Portugal), Crew2000 (Scotland), DrugScouts (Germany), Energy Control (Spain), Safe N Sound (Belgium), and Unity (Jellinek, Netherlands). The main goal is as stated above to create a platform for ‘connecting and improving Peer Interventions in Nightlife Settings on EU level’.

Q: What is the goal of PINS?
A: The goal of Connecting PINS is to create an online platform for peer educators from all over Europe to share knowledge and to give insight in how to organize a harm reduction peer-project and to have a tool to exchange.

Q: What is peer education? And how does it work?
A: Peer Education is an approach to health promotion, in which community members are supported to promote health-enhancing change among their peers. Peer education is the teaching or sharing of health information, values and behavior to others who may share similar social backgrounds or life experiences.
Rather than health professionals educating members of the public, the idea behind peer education is that ordinary lay people are in the best position to encourage healthy behavior to each other. (source: Wikipedia)

Q: Are you against using drugs?
A: No, but we also do not promote drug use. Drug use is always a risky behaviour and we know that it is best not to use drugs to avoid the risks related to drug use, but there will always be people using drugs and we think it is best to give harm reduction information and material to the people using drugs to reduce the risks related to drug use.

Q: Can I join?
A: If you are a member of a harm reduction peer-to-peer organization then you will be able to join. Contact info@connectingpins.eu for more information. If you are not member of it and you want to become one you can find list of organizations in Europe on our web site with their contact informations.

Q: What are the benefits to my organisation if I join?
A: By becoming a member of Connecting PINS you will become a part of an international platform for sharing knowledge. Peers will be able to come in to contact with other peer educators and learn from each other. There will also be possibilities to organize peer-exchanges etc.