Fall has been soo busy! So much news to tell!!!

We had a visit from our Drug Free Community Federal Representative/Grants Manager at the end of August. He was quite impressed by our Coalition and in fact called us "ROBUST!!!" I'll take it! We started changing our Coalition, only meeting 4 times a year, creating work groups and developing By-Laws! We are developing a sustainability plan, have 5 new members of our Steering Committee and have a Youth Prevention Team that is 16 strong!1 Thanks to the recruitment efforts of Kara Younger out Youth Prevention Coordinator!  We enjoyed an awesome night at the Rag Shag Parade, giving out 800 Safe School, Safe Streets glow in the dark wrist bands! The School Committee approved our request to take 3 youth to the National CADCA leadership conference in Washington DC in February! So excited! Well, that's about it...Prevention Rocks, We care, and we believe we are the CHANGE!!!! 

Stay Safe This Summer

As the school year winds down, Safe Schools, Safe Streets wishes you all a safe, relaxing summer. We just received our data from the Prevention Needs Assessment and some of the results are upsetting at best.  One of the most glaring issues is teens and alcohol consumption. It was off the charts in the areas of use and binge drinking. Safety means making good choices around any type of substance and the amounts that you ingest. You can get ALCOHOL poisoning also! Have a great summer, but send the right message to your teens! 

The staff at 4SC!!!!

March comes in like a Lion!

Wow, Life has been pretty awesome for the 4SC this month. We battled the increase of the purchase age of tobacco to be raised to 21! On the same evening we were fighting the good fight about BIG Tobacco and Social Access to tobacco, we reported to the School Committee about the implementation of SBIRT,(Screening, Brief Intervention, Referral to Treatment). Such a wonderful experience and such support from the School Committee! Starting in the next school year all 8th/9th graders will be screened for substance use risk! This will allow us to help young people at an earlier age and support their efforts to live healthy lives. I want to thank Jordana Harper for her support, The Greenfield Board of Health and Nicole Zabko! Thanks Youth for Change for your awesome presentation/speech! Onward and Upward for Substance Abuse Prevention in Greenfield!!!

What a WINTER!!!

Hello Everyone! The winter is unending, but really exciting things have been happening in the Safe Schools, Safe Streets universe!!! I traveled to Washington DC with Christine Nosel,(our grant manager), to attend the 25th CADCA conference! Filled with learning, a lot about marijuana legalization discussion, and meeting our Representatives and Senators in support of continued funding of the Drug Free Communities Program! Arriving back, we got busy!!!Talking collectively about social access to substances in our community,  discussion with the Greenfield Board of Health re: raising the smoking age in Greenfield to 21, and  banning flavored tobaccos sold in our town including e-cigarettes! We also spent a day  admonishing our legislators in Boston for cutting the grant funding that would have allowed us to hire a Substance Abuse Counselor for 3 years! It was hectic! As we move  toward Spring, please check here for updates! Last evening we has a fabulous meeting with the Health and Safety Sub-Committee of the School Board to ask if we could move SBIRT(Screening Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment) into our High School  Health Screening Program! Looks like it might happen, still waiting for the result of the meeting, but our school board members were supportive and inquisitive! An excellent meeting! Next Coalition Meeting will be on March 12, 2015!!! Hope to see you there!

SBIRT

As we move forward, I want to give you head's up about our plans regarding SBIRT! SBIRT short for Screening, Brief Intervention, Referral and Treatment. It is an evidence based process that helps us identify young people who are at risk for substance misuse/abuse. It's implemented like any other screening out of the nurse's office. Using a CRAFFT tool( I have copies if you would like to see them!)and motivational interviewing, the school nurse asks some very specific questions to the student. If they receive a high score on the screening,  they are identified at risk and channeled into a process to receive help and monitoring. Northampton High School has been doing this for a few years now with excellent results. I will be presenting to the  School Board Health and Safety sub-committee next month to ask permission to move this forward, if you have any interest or comments I'd love to hear them!

Stay warm, Maureen