A CO MEATH mother has vowed to raise awareness of heroin use after her seven-year-old son came home with a drug-filled syringe.
Adam Furphy was out playing with friends in his Navan housing estate earlier this month when he came upon the needle and miraculously avoided jabbing himself.
Believing it to be a threat to other local children, the youngster simply picked up the syringe and brought it home.
"It still had drugs in it. The guards are saying that it's gone for forensics [to confirm the substance] but I was thinking, what if he got pricked?" said his angry mother Lorraine.
"We tried for Adam for seven years and somebody could have just wiped him out in minutes.
"It's not the first time a needle has been found on a street, but if it could be the last time, that would be great. Adam was grand but it doesn't mean the next little fellow is going to be."
Adam had been out with friends in the Townspark housing estate in Navan when he came upon the hypodermic needle.
Locals believe it may have belonged to one of several recovering addicts in the area but are furious that they would leave it lying on the ground.
"There are a few health board houses rented out there for recovering addicts. It's a disease and I understand that but they don't have to do it on the street," said Furphy.
"He came in at around four o'clock and he had a syringe behind his back. He said he picked it up because he didn't want any of the other kids getting hurt, God love him. He thought that he was a little super hero but I nearly had a heart attack. I checked him so many times and I think I bleached his hands about 50 times."
Transport minister and local TD Noel Dempsey wrote to the family after their concerns were raised.
Another local mother, Kimberley Hoare, described it as a "life and death situation".
"We told the children, if you find something, don't pick it up. Just come in and tell an adult."