The Issues in Scotland
A United Nations report has found that Scotland is the drug crime capital of the world. (03.03.10)
The study found Scottish drug users and dealers commit more offences per head of population than any other nation. The research from the UN’s Office on Drugs and Crime compared criminal activity, abuse and possession across more than 70 countries.
Scotland has one of the highest underage pregnancy rates in the EU, along with high incidents of STIs.
A short life expectancy in Scotland’s most deprived areas : 57 yrs men, 62 yrs women.
- Alcohol misuse in Scotland costs £3.5billion every year – equivalent to £900 for every taxpayer.
- At least 65,000 children in Scotland live with a problem drinking parent.
- Half of Scottish prisoners and 77% of young offenders were drunk at the time of their offence.
Coronory Heart Disease and Colon Cancer are two of Scotland’s biggest killers.
How can we break the cycle?
As Scottish residents can see on a daily basis there are many serious problems in our cities. On-going problems such as alcoholism, illegal/legal drug use, fatty diets, disease, lack of exercise, crime, poverty and abuse.
Can we find a common denominator? Why do people adopt abusive ways? Is it to escape their realities? Is it to intentionally live under quality lives? What problems are we facing, how can we deal with them and most crucially how can we prevent them from happening again and again?
Babies, children and youths are victims of parents’ abusive ways. As children they have limited freedoms to defend themselves or to know that there is a better way of life. Far too common is the repetition of the abuse from one generation to the next.
Youths beocme involved in their parents abusive ways and in turn accept that as life with no escape. This is inflicted upon their friends and spreads to groups and gangs, very prevalent in Scotland’s cities. Growing crime, violence, gangs, unwanted pregnancies and drug/alcohol consumption leading to unhealthy, depressive and dangerous lives.
This is a reality, we can see it in all of Scotland’s cities, as we can across the globe.
First word that comes to most people is EDUCATION. However, when Scotland increased Sex Education into the curriculum the problem worsened.
We are told via media outlets constantly what not to eat and encouraged to go to the Doctors. We put billions into the NHS. Our police and teachers and social workers are over-worked. Hospitals and prisons are overflowing and the tax payer is at a loss.
Grassroots, from the ground up, change.
Several areas of focus :
1. Young children.
Children spend most of their time in school and develop behavioural patterns. Mariposa organises Gardening Clubs during school time, after school clubs and community activity in local parks for them, theIr siblings and parents.
Engage them in environmental activity to keep them occupied, encourage teamwork, give them a hobby that can lead to future careers such as further study of Agriculture, Biology, Landscape Design, Forestry, Charitable work.
3. The larger community.
Fun, engaging activities to help families see a brighter future. Grasp the possibility of positive change in their lives.
4. The physical environment.
We are dependent on the physical environment. Even the most independent person depends on the natural environment. By creating gardens we are working closely to nature, understanding how it works and how we can collaborate. It can also show us the difference between natural and synthetic which can shape our future decisions about what we eat, drink and take. Therepeutic benefits from gardening have been shown to improve behaviour, inherent behaviour and characteristics.
Encouragement of critical thinking skills, creativity and awareness.
Motivation to improve themselves and their lives through rewarding outdoor tasks where their mindsets can change so they can believe in themselves and a better life.
Relation to the environment and nature to show that nature is powerful and resilient and we depend on each other.
Engaging participants in playful yet challenging activites so they can enjoy learning and actively engage in education and see that they are improving, getting smarter and supporting the natural environment.
Sustainability – long-term plans for themselves and for the environment on which we depend. Promote respect and care and education and forward planning.
Change in landscape and social structure – show that life can be changed and modified, at any moment one can take control and make decisions for a better future.
Collaborative learning in schools, in the playground and in the community. Working in teams, identifying with each other, building friendships and a supportive loving network.
Abolishing the nature deficit disorder – even although we are in cities we can still create flourshing gardens, interact with nature, encourage wildlife and grow food while getting outdoor exercise.