Head Shop Substances

In 2007 there were estimated to be approximately 30 Head Shops also known as Smart Shops in the Irish Republic. In 2010 there were estimated to be over 100 around the country. Health and Support Workers have been reporting that substances being sold in these premises are placing an extra burden on the services they provide, and having a negative impact on the well-being of the people they provide services to.

Despite the recent legislation to ban these substances, there are still hundreds of these drugs available on the internet and a constant stream of new chemicals which can be sold legally as drugs in Ireland are continuously being developed.

This programme can be delivered in-house to groups or organisations as requested. 

Programme Duration

1 day training workshop on head shops substances and working with people who use them.

Programme Certification

Certificate of Attendance in "A description of head shops substances and their effect" from The Learning Curve Institute.

Programme Aims

The aim of this 1 day workshop is to enable participants to:

  1. Recognise the most commonly available substances.  
  2. Understand the affects and potential harms these substances may have when ingested. 
  3. Understand the context for these substances legal status. 
  4. Identify and adopt strategies to work with people who are under the influence. 
  5. Understand harm reduction models of intervention and their applications.

Programme Content

Students will receive handouts and relevant literature to enable them to develop their understanding of Legal Highs and Head Shops. During the workshop, Case Studies will be used to illustrate Harm Reduction approaches to dealing with people who have ingested Legal Highs.

Learning Outcomes

  • To build on and expand existing knowledge in relation to Legal Highs and Head Shops. 
  • To enhance confidence in participants use of Harm reduction strategies.
  • To allow space and time for participants to look at their own practice and/or service and formulate appropriate responses in relation to Legal Highs and Head Shops. 
  • To facilitate discussion regarding clients that they have had or are currently working with (suitably anonymous) in relation to a Harm Reduction approach.

Entry Requirements




Other Information

The Learning Curve Institute offers a unique post course support system whereby participants are provided with the contact details of the lecturer and are free to contact him/her with any questions they may have or that they would like the lecturer to help them with.


All materials will be provided by The Learning Curve Institute.

Contact Details

Please contact The Learning Curve Institute on 098 25530 or info@thelearningcurve.ie for more information.