CCSA: Alcohol Education Tailored for Youth: What We Heard Report

Alcohol is the most commonly used substance among youth in Canada. We wanted to know from young people what they think about the alcohol education that targets them. Alcohol Education Tailored for Youth: What We Heard provides guidance for developing educational resources for teenagers and young adults. 

In 2019, almost half of young people in grades 7 to 12 said they used alcohol. In the focus groups held for this project, young people told us that they want to make informed decisions about alcohol and know how to lower the risks to their health if they decide to use it.

The objective of the project was to build upon knowledge products previously produced by CCSA and co-develop tailored public education resources to support Canadian youth and young adults in making evidence-based decisions about alcohol. We wanted to make space for meaningful engagement with youth from across Canada to ensure the relevance and impact of our work.

Highlights of the report include:

  • Youth shared their perception that Canada’s current Low-Risk Alcohol Drinking Guidelines do not align with youth drinking culture.
  • Youth-targeted alcohol education ads need to focus on providing facts.
  • Youth use alcohol and partying with their friends as a reward system after working hard.

We encourage you to share this report and its knowledge products with your networks, partners and communities, as well as to connect them with CCSA and its resources at We also encourage everyone to work towards meaningful partnership and equitable engagement with youth to support the development of educational material that resonates with them and meets them where they are.

If you have any questions about these resources or CCSA’s work with youth and young adults, please email

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