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  • Lauri Beekmann

EHYT ry awarded for outstanding contribution to public health


05.12.2023 - The 2023 Public Health Award was granted to EHYT ry. THL Director-General Markku Tervahauta presented the award today at the Public Health Day. EHYT was recognized for its significant efforts in preventing harms caused by alcohol, drugs, nicotine products, and gambling, and in promoting public health.

EHYT, formed in 2012 through the fusion of three organizations, has established itself as a key national player in preventive substance abuse work over the past decade.

EHYT actively supports community-level work through education and various materials. The organization interacts with children and youth in schools, online, and through recreational activities. Through its regional work, EHYT has supported municipal and regional actors, thereby strengthening the guidance of preventive substance abuse work by authorities.

EHYT coordinates the Preventive Substance Abuse Work Network, comprising nearly 60 social and health organizations. The network implements annual joint campaigns and key training events in the field.

In addition, EHYT maintains open-for-all substance-free meeting places through its Elokolo activities and offers around-the-clock substance abuse counseling for those in need. A substance abuse ombudsman operating within EHYT assists with matters related to substance abuse services.

EHYT is also a bold social influencer, striving to bring evidence-based perspectives on substance, nicotine, and gambling policies to the awareness of political decision-makers. In doing so, EHYT strongly defends the public health basis of alcohol and nicotine policies.

"There is a need for EHYT's comprehensive work, as the harms of substance use and gambling to society, communities, relatives, and individuals are diverse, significant, and still very current," says Tervahauta.

"We are grateful and delighted for this significant recognition, which underscores the importance of preventive substance abuse work," states Juha Mikkonen, Director of EHYT.

"We want to emphasize that effective preventive substance abuse work requires actions at individual, community, and societal levels. Broad and multifaceted work is a prerequisite for impact. In substance and gambling policies, we hope that political decision-making does not overlook the accumulated research evidence on effective measures," Mikkonen continues.

The Public Health Award was given for the ninth time this year. Last year, the award was granted to the K-Market's Bullying-Free Zone action model.

Public Health Day is an annual event organized by THL, focusing on current issues in public health and health promotion. Each year, the event is themed around a key public health challenge. Public Health Days have been celebrated since 1994.

Source: EHYT ry

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