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What’s New

What's New articles share information to help event organizers plan, host, and evaluate events aimed at mobilizing a community around evidence-based strategies to prevent underage drinking.

New Resources for Summer Prevention and Celebrating Safely

Now Available in Spanish: Popular Prevention Resources from SAMHSA

SAMHSA has released Spanish-language versions of its underage drinking prevention fact sheets and data visualizations. These resources help parents and youth who are Spanish speaking learn more about the risks and harms caused by underage drinking and why it’s important to prevent underage alcohol use by youth and young adults. Read the full article for links to these resources.

This Summer, Urge Parents to Talk With Graduates About Celebrating Safely

NIAAA’s new fact sheet “Parents—Talk With Your High School Grads About Celebrating Safely” is a key prevention resource for parents this summer. It emphasizes the important role they play in preventing underage drinking and provides information about the negative impact of alcohol on a teenager’s developing brain, the importance of setting rules about alcohol use, and why serving as a role model is important.

Communities Talk About Webinar Available for On-Demand Viewing

SAMHSA recently launched a new online learning series called “Communities Talk About…”. The inaugural webinar episode, “Communities Talk About: Young Adult Leadership in Addressing Intersectionality to Advance Prevention,” explored the importance of prevention strategies that prioritize the intersecting identities and lived experiences of youth and young adults.

Date: 06/09/2022

Communities Talk About Virtual Session Recording and Prevention Success Stories

SAMHSA’s Underage Drinking Prevention Education Initiatives launched a new online learning series, “Communities Talk About…” The first session, “Communities Talk About: Young Adult Leadership in Addressing Intersectionality to Advance Prevention,” featured experts from top youth-led organizations and explored the importance of developing prevention strategies within the context of the intersectional, lived experiences of youth/young adults. Intersectionality is a lens through which prevention professionals can gain a better understanding of how personal identities—such as gender, race, class, ability, and sexual orientation—intersect and create specific lived experiences for people and communities.

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a major impact on mental and emotional health of children and youth. As Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy states in Protecting Youth Mental Health: The U.S. Surgeon General’s Advisory, “The challenges today’s generation of young people face are unprecedented and uniquely hard to navigate. And the effect these challenges have had on their mental health is devastating.” Read the full article for more information and to see success stories from communities that have addressed mental health in their own work through the Communities Talk initiative.

Date: 05/05/2022

Register Now for National Prevention Week and SAMHSA’s Prevention Day!

Don’t miss SAMHSA’s Prevention Day 2022 on May 9! This virtual event will kick off National Prevention Week activities.

 New Findings: Changes in Alcohol Use Among Girls and Young Women

Girls and young women, ages 12 to 20, are now drinking more alcohol than their male counterparts. SAMHSA has a new publication that shares the facts on this shift in behavior to help the prevention field envision strategies to curb harmful drinking behaviors among this group.

 Colleges Get Involved in the “One Pill Can Kill” Initiative

In this month’s Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Prevention Profiles: Take Five podcast, learn about the importance of DEA’s “One Pill Can Kill” initiative and how colleges can get involved with Take Back Day.

 New Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

CDC has released two reports, one with data on tobacco use among middle and high school students and another on children’s mental health.

Date: 04/14/2022

It’s Time to Start Planning for SAMHSA’s National Prevention Week 2022!

It’s Time to Start Planning for SAMHSA’s National Prevention Week 2022!

SAMHSA’s National Prevention Week (NPW) is a national public education platform that brings communities and organizations together to educate the public about the importance of substance use prevention and positive mental health, while sharing information about effective prevention strategies. This year NPW will be May 8–14 and SAMHSA is already planning! Go to the NPW website to stay updated and check back often for new resources that can help you start planning your activities.

Tune in to Prevention Technology Transfer Centers (PTTC) Webinars

The SAMHSA-funded PTTC Networks provide technical assistance and learning resources you can use in your substance misuse prevention efforts. By visiting the PTTC Training and Events Calendar, you can easily find webinars and other events to help you keep up with the latest prevention information. Here are some upcoming events on underage drinking and substance misuse prevention:

Date: 03/17/2022

NEW! Data and Success Stories from Your State; and Drug-Free Communities Grant Next Month

Inspiration at Your Fingertips: Data and Success Stories from Your State
You can find the information you need to support your underage drinking prevention work by visiting the State Resources page. There, you’ll find your state summary from the Report to Congress on the Prevention and Reduction of Underage Drinking with rates of past-month alcohol use and binge drinking broken down by age group. Information about your state’s expenditures for substance abuse prevention and treatment is also available, as well as details on current laws, enforcement, and programs. You also can see what prevention success looks like on the local level with Communities Talk Success Stories from your state listed on the page. 

Apply for a Drug-Free Communities Grant Next Month!
The Drug-Free Communities (DFC) Support Program is the nation’s leading effort to mobilize communities to prevent and reduce substance use among youth. Coalitions’ activities are guided by the SAMHSA’s Strategic Prevention Framework (SPF) and the SPF Seven Environmental Strategies to Affect Community Change. In FY2020, more than 700 DFC coalitions across the U.S. received funding to support their prevention activities—and you could be one of them this year! The DFC Support Program’s Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) will be released in March on Grants.gov. Visit the DFC Support Program for training opportunities.

Date: 02/16/2022

New! 2021 Success Stories are Live

Host a Communities Talk Event in 2022 With the Power of Partnerships and Sponsors 
While SAMHSA’s Communities Talk stipend cycle has ended, the work of prevention has not! SAMHSA encourages communities to continue to build momentum behind the substance misuse prevention movement by hosting an event or activity this year. Now is also a great time to establish and fortify strategic partnerships if you’re planning to do something big in 2023.  

Even if you already have an extensive partner network, think about ways to expand or strengthen it. Partners are vital to maximizing your reach, promoting your message, and supporting your prevention effort—including providing financial support with in-kind contributions. Watch the Communities Talk webinar Leveraging Partnerships in Planning/Hosting a Communities Talk Event to learn how to cultivate and maintain mutually beneficial partner relationships to achieve lasting impact.

New! Featured Success Stories 
Success Stories for events and activities held in 2021 are now posted, and new this year are featured Success Stories that go a little deeper into the what, why, and how communities and organizations nationwide have recruited, educated, and mobilized their constituents to prevent underage drinking. Take a look and prepare to be inspired! 

Date: 01/21/2022

Stay Safe This Holiday Season

Keep the Holidays Bright by Staying Safe Behind the Wheel 
December is observed as National Impaired Driving Prevention Month because it can be the deadliest when it comes to drunk driving. As part of the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has created resources designed to be used during the holidays to educate your community members about the risks of substance use and prevent tragedies. The holiday campaign runs from December 15, 2021, through January 1, 2022.

The Essential Link to Prevention: Parent/Caregiver and Child Communication
When parents and caregivers communicate with their children about the harmful effects and negative consequences of alcohol and other substances, they can make a real difference. The holidays, especially New Year’s Eve, are a critical time for community-based prevention practitioners to encourage and enable parents and caregivers to talk with their children about the dangers of alcohol and other substance use. However, adults may need some help to know how to discuss these sensitive topics with their children. 

Date: 12/02/2021

NEW! Featured Success Stories; Evaluating Communities Talk Activities

NEW! Featured Success Stories
How do Communities Talk hosts put their events and activities together—and what do they achieve? Three new success stories describe Communities Talk activities in Maryland, rural Montana, and on a college campus in Florida. Lean what they were up against and how they worked within their communities to get a conversation going about preventing underage drinking.

Evaluating Communities Talk Activities
If you have held a Communities Talk activity or event this year, it’s time to review and evaluate its impact; this is the best way to plan strategically for future activities and put you in the best possible position to respond to the underage drinking and substance misuse prevention needs of your community. Here are some tips and tools to help you evaluate your event.

Date: 11/04/2021

NEW! “Talk. They Hear You.” Campaign Posters; National Teen Driver Safety Week; Red Ribbon Week

NEW! “Talk. They Hear You.” Campaign Posters

SAMHSA’s “Talk. They Hear You.” substance use prevention campaign has released three new posters. These posters encourage parents and educators concerned about their child’s or student’s health and wellbeing to work with student assistance professionals. The vibrant posters are available in three sizes (11x17, 18x24, 24x36) and designed to grab attention and inspire action.

National Teen Driver Safety Week Is October 17–23, 2021

During National Teen Driver Safety Week this October, encourage parents to have conversations with their teens about important rules for staying safe behind the wheel. Use the NHTSA’s Rules for the Road campaign materials to inspire parents to discuss the importance of driving safety with their young drivers. Read how other communities incorporated teen driving safety into their Communities Talk activity.

Red Ribbon Week Is October 23–31, 2021

The DEA’s Red Ribbon Week, America’s oldest and largest drug prevention awareness program, takes place this year October 23–31. Celebrate Red Ribbon Week in your community by raising awareness about the value of living a drug-free life! 

Date: 10/07/2021

SAVE THE DATE: The annual Red Ribbon Week Campus Video PSA Contest starts September 13!

SAVE THE DATE: The annual Red Ribbon Week Campus Video PSA Contest starts September 13! 

As part of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) Red Ribbon Week campaign, the DEA and SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention are co-sponsoring the annual Campus Video PSA Contest for colleges and universities. Join SAMHSA, the DEA’s Campus Drug Prevention initiative, and the larger prevention community for a Twitter chat to learn more. 

SAMHSA Expands its Talk. They Hear You. PSA Series

SAMHSA expands its Talk. They Hear You. substance use prevention campaign resources with the release of 15 new print PSAs. Tips include topics to discuss with teens and young adults before dropping them off at a party or before they get behind the wheel, and how to keep the dialogue about substances going as they get older. 

NEW! Turning Data Into Action: A User’s Guide to the Report to Congress on the Prevention and Reduction of Underage Drinking

The Turning Data Into Action guide provides a digestible overview of the Report to Congress, State Performance and Best Practices report and state-specific reports. You’ll find tips for using the reports specifically for communities, coalitions, parents, local government agencies and law enforcement. 

Date: 09/14/2021

Download the new "Talk. They Hear You." mobile app

Download the new “Talk. They Hear You.” mobile app.

Help parents and caregivers prepare for one of the most important conversations they may have with their kids by using SAMHSA’s new “Talk. They Hear You.” campaign mobile app. Watch a quick video to learn more about the app and see how it works.

Do you know how your state prevents underage drinking? Learn the laws with SAMHSA’s new series.

This new series in the SAMHSA Store summarizes the 24 legal policies that allow you to track how your state regulates underage drinking compared to other states. Using these summaries will help inform your prevention work.

Back to campus!

In the coming weeks, many students will be physically returning to college and university campuses and engaging in the social activities they have been missing during the pandemic. Luckily SAMHSA has many resources you can use with students, parents, and the campus community to aid your on-campus prevention efforts.

Date: 08/06/2021

Did It Work? Taking Stock of Your Communities Talk Activity

When you invest in holding a Communities Talk activity or event, you—and your partners or participants—will want to walk away knowing the effort made an impact. A good starting place for evaluation is to determine what success looks like to you and your community (ideally before the activity takes place).

Date: 07/08/2021

Connect the Dots with a Communities Talk Planning Stipend

Connect the Dots with a Communities Talk Planning Stipend
If a lack of resources is one of the things getting in the way of you connecting to your community about underage drinking prevention, a $750 planning stipend is your solution! But register now because stipends are going fast. 

Need Something to Talk About? 
As you plan your Communities Talk activity, don’t forget that it can be combined with another community activity or event, as long as underage drinking prevention is a key, related topic. For example, underage drinking prevention could be discussed along with mental/behavioral health, marijuana use, e-cigarette use or vaping, opioid misuse, or other health problems. 

Date: 06/02/2021

Dig into These NEW SAMHSA Resources to Prevent Underage Drinking

Four NEW SAMHSA Publications to Prevent Underage Drinking

SAMHSA has new publications for you to use with youth, parents, and other stakeholders in your community.

Talking With Teens About Impaired Driving

Now that more teens are going back to school and back to socializing with friends, it’s a good time to encourage parents and caregivers to talk with their teens about safe driving. The “Talk. They Hear You.” underage drinking prevention campaign has resources to help.

Communities Talk Planning Stipends are Going Fast!

Make sure to register soon so that you can receive a planning stipend for your Communities Talk activity. Here’s a quick and easy way to request an invitation to register.

Prevention Technology Transfer Centers (PTTC) Webinars

The SAMHSA-funded PTTC Networks provide technical assistance and learning resources you can use in your substance misuse prevention efforts. Read more to learn about upcoming events on underage drinking and alcohol misuse prevention.

Date: 05/06/2021

Even More New Resources for Your Activity; Get Ready for National Prevention Week 2021

NEW! Tips and Tools for Hosting a Virtual Activity

Prevention happens even in a socially distant world! These tips and tools offer creative and innovative ways to host a Communities Talk activity to bring people together.

NEW! After High School: Talking With Your Young Adult About Underage Drinking

Young adults still listen to their parents when it comes to decisions about avoiding alcohol. This new fact sheet has the information parents need to start the conversation about the consequences of underage drinking and alcohol use.

National Prevention Week 2021: Prevention Happens Anywhere and Everywhere

Substance misuse prevention happens in many places, spaces, and communities. SAMHSA’s National Prevention Week (NPW), set for May 9 through 15, is an annual health observance dedicated to increasing public awareness of and action around mental and/or substance use disorders. Find ideas, tools, and other resources for participating on the NPW website.

Don’t Be Left Out! Register Now to Receive Your Planning Stipend

More than 500 organizations have already applied for a $750 Communities Talk planning stipend. If you didn’t receive an invitation to register yet, email info@stopalcoholabuse.net to request one. Remember, planning stipends are only available on a first-come, first-served basis and they are going fast.

Date: 04/07/2021

New College Drinking Resources; Planning Your 2021 Communities Talk Activity

NEW! College Drinking: Prevention Perspectives Discussion Guides for Campus Communities

We are excited to introduce two new discussion guides to use with the College Drinking: Prevention Perspectives video series! The new discussion guides provide an overview of key themes and strategies in each episode, as well as conversation starters to spark discussions within your college community about alcohol.

Have You Started Planning Your 2021 Communities Talk to Prevent Underage Drinking Activity?

If you haven’t, don’t worry! SAMHSA has plenty of resources to help you plan your 2021 Communities Talk activity. If you’re planning a Communities Talk activity for parents, there are new resources from SAMHSA’s Talk. They Hear You. campaign. Read the complete article to learn more.

Date: 03/09/2021

Virtual Communities Talk Activities; SAMHSA Prevention Resources

Discover Innovative Ideas for Virtual Communities Talk Activities

The Find an Activity Map has details about innovative ways communities and institutions of higher education used their planning stipends to mobilize their community and prevent underage drinking. The map will even show you some of the creative prevention activities happening near you!

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, communities were finding innovative ways to share prevention messages! Here are some creative ideas you can incorporate into your 2021 Communities Talk plans.

SAMHSA Prevention Resources at Your Fingertips

When planning your Communities Talk activity, remember that SAMHSA has prevention and planning resources for you to use.

Date: 02/12/2021

2021 Communities Talk Registration; New and Updated Planning Resources; SAMHSA's 17th Annual Prevention Day

It's Time! Register Now for a 2021 Communities Talk Planning Stipend of $750

Registration for the 2021 Communities Talk activity cycle is now open, and $750 planning stipends are available on a first-come, first-served basis! If you didn’t receive an invitation to register yet, email info@stopalcoholabuse.net to request one.

Once your registration information is verified (including a valid copy of your organization’s W-9 form), you should receive your $750 planning stipend within 21 days. Please cash your check within 30 days, even if your activity won’t take place until later in the year. Read the Communities Talk Quick Start Planning Guide for more information about registration and planning an activity.

Fresh for 2021: New and Updated Communities Talk Resources

We know prevention has changed in 2021, and a top priority for this year is providing new and updated resources to support prevention activities. These tips and resources will help you promote and implement your Communities Talk activity.

SAMHSA’s 17th Annual Prevention Day is Monday February 1, 2021

Attend SAMHSA’s 17th Annual—and virtual—Prevention Day and expand your knowledge of evidence-based prevention and intervention strategies. Prevention Day is free, so register today.

Date: 01/15/2021

Get Ready for Communities Talk 2021!

Reduce Underage Drinking Where You Live with Communities Talk

Beginning in January 2021, $750 planning stipends will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Keep an eye on your email inbox in January for an invitation to apply for a 2021 Communities Talk planning stipend. You can also email info@stopalcoholabuse.net to request an invitation.

Communities Talk Quick Start Planning Guide – Updated for 2021!

Get a head start on your 2021 activity with the newly updated Quick Start Planning Guide. The guide provides a checklist and calendar to support your planning efforts. It also includes helpful information to complete your Communities Talk profile and registration.

Prevention Activities in a Socially Distanced World

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, connecting to your community with prevention messages has been increasingly challenging. But there are many ways to keep prevention alive and community engagement strong that don't require in-person interactions. Read more for some ideas to push prevention forward virtually.

Date: 12/15/2020

SAMHSA’s 17th Annual Prevention Day and Celebrating the Holidays Safely

Virtually Attend SAMHSA’s 17th Annual Prevention Day!

SAMHSA’s 17th Annual Prevention Day will convene on Monday, February 1, 2021, in conjunction with CADCA’s Virtual Forum. This exciting, one-day virtual event will give you the latest on SAMHSA’s prevention priorities for 2021. Registration is free to the public!

Celebrating the Holidays Safely

This year, families and friends will face new and unique challenges as they try to celebrate the holiday season while still following CDC COVID-19 guidelines to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. This is an especially important topic for underage youth, as data show that they are involved in alcohol-related motor vehicle crashes despite being too young to legally purchase or possess alcohol. Read more to learn about resources to help prevent underage drinking and driving.

Date: 11/17/2020

Coming Soon: 2021 Communities Talk to Prevent Underage Drinking

It's back! The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), together with the Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Prevention of Underage Drinking (ICCPUD) and other national partners, will sponsor the eighth round of Communities Talk to Prevent Underage Drinking. The cycle will launch in January 2021 and $750 stipends will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Using Data to Inform and Mobilize Your Community

Community leaders, parents, and other concerned citizens can be motivated to prevent underage drinking when they learn how many adolescents and young adults begin using alcohol each year. Inspire more people to actively support prevention in your community by using data from SAMHSA’s 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH).

Date: 10/06/2020

Getting Youth Involved in Your Communities Talk Activities

Even in a world that is social distancing, youth can and should play an important role in Communities Talk activity planning. For inspiration on how to get youth involved in your next Communities Talk, check out the story video. This short video highlights ways communities can work with youth to help reduce the prevalence of underage drinking.

NEW! Prevention Graphics Gallery

SAMHSA has developed three new data visualizations designed to facilitate conversations between children and parents or other caring adults, and support community efforts to prevent underage drinking. The visualizations bring key findings from the 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health to life by creating a narration that helps outlines how communities get informed, stay prepared and take action.

Date: 09/01/2020

SAMHSA Assistance Related to COVID-19

SAMHSA’s COVID-19 page has resources and information to assist you in your prevention efforts during this complex time. There you’ll find SAMHSA’s Training and Technical Assistance Related to COVID-19, which is updated weekly, as well as other helpful materials. Read more for descriptions of helpful materials.

Date: 08/17/2020

Communities Talk Success Stories; Managing Youth Stress and Substance Use During COVID-19

Success Stories—Prevention Work Continues Despite Impacts from COVID-19 Pandemic

As you are rethinking prevention strategies to adapt to challenges faced during the COVID-19 pandemic, learn how some of your colleagues have succeeded in refining their Communities Talk events.

Managing Youth Stress and Substance Misuse During COVID-19 Pandemic

Recent research shows that the COVID-19 pandemic is causing increased levels of stress and substance misuse. Read more about recent findings as well as resources you can use to aid youth and caring adults in your community.

Date: 07/27/2020

Preventing and Reducing Underage Drinking—Virtually!

Following social distancing guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state and local public health officials can make prevention work challenging. One way to reach your audience with prevention messages is by hosting a virtual Communities Talk event using free video conference platforms and using different virtual techniques. To help you plan, we’ve included some ideas for you!

Date: 06/01/2020

Sign Up for SAMHSA Prevention Emails; Underage Drinking Website Resources

SAMHSA Email Newsletters to Support Your Prevention Initiatives

This is the final edition of the Communities Talk email newsletter, so be sure to bookmark our website and check back often for the latest information about Communities Talk events and resources for underage drinking prevention. Read the full e-Alert article to learn how to get the latest SAMHSA news and resources about substance use prevention delivered via email.

SAMHSA's StopAlcoholAbuse.gov and Communities Talk Website Resources

The StopAlcoholAbuse.gov and Communities Talk websites offers valuable resources to help strengthen your prevention efforts, including the state map that links to individual state profiles in the Report to Congress on the Prevention and Reduction of Underage Drinking. Read the full e-Alert article to learn about what you can find on these websites.

Date: 05/04/2020

SAMHSA Information on Social Distancing and Online Resources for Underage Drinking Prevention

Other SAMHSA Email Newsletters to Support Your Prevention Initiatives

The Communities Talk email newsletter will soon be discontinued, so be sure to bookmark our website and check back often for the latest information about Communities Talk events and resources for underage drinking prevention. Read the full article for links to sign up for other prevention-related email newsletters.

SAMHSA's Tips for Social Distancing, Quarantine, and Isolation During an Infectious Disease Outbreak

SAMHSA understands how social distancing and quarantine may come with challenges for substance misuse prevention and serious concerns for individuals, families, and communities. SAMHSA's Tips for Social Distancing, Quarantine, and Isolation During an Infectious Disease Outbreak shares information on how to cope with the thoughts and emotions many people are experiencing.

Communities Talk Success Stories, Share Your Success!

The latest Communities Talk Success Stories are now available to help you learn about all the creative and inspiring events your colleagues hosted to mobilize their communities in support of underage drinking and substance misuse prevention. You might find inspiration or ideas for an event of your own - and don't forget to share your own Success Story!

A Free Educational Resource for Virtual Learning: Alcohol's Effects on the Brain (AlcoholFX)

Given the many COVID-19-related school closures, educators, parents, and caregivers are looking for innovative ways to help students learn as much as they can online at home. AlcoholFX is a fun, interactive, science-based app for children ages 10 to 12 to learn about alcohol's impact on the brain.

Date: 04/16/2020

Establishing Partners for Your Work and Resources for Young Adults

Establishing Partners to Support Your Communities Talk Event in 2020

Keep the momentum you gained from your 2019 Communities Talk event going by hosting an event in 2020! Partnering with a local business or other community groups is a great way to enhance your underage drinking prevention efforts during non-stipend years. The Communities Talk website has some great information to help you develop partnerships that support your prevention efforts.

Substance Misuse Prevention for Young Adults

SAMHSA’s guide, Substance Misuse Prevention for Young Adults, supports health care providers, health systems, and communities seeking to prevent substance misuse among young adults. It describes relevant research findings, examines emerging and best practices, identifies knowledge gaps and implementation challenges, and offers useful resources.

Date: 03/04/2020

New Spanish-language resources and underage drinking prevention during the holidays

Underage Drinking Prevention Materials Now Available in Spanish

Several new Spanish-language underage drinking prevention resources are now available. Originally available in English, the resources are adapted to connect with Spanish-speaking audiences to help community-based organizations and prevention strategists address issues around underage drinking in those communities.

Talking to Your College Student about Alcohol During the Holidays

Students are returning home after their first semester in college, and it’s a great time for parents and caregivers to talk with them about alcohol or reinforce conversations they may have had at the beginning of the semester. Check out SAMHSA’s resources for parents to guide your own conversations.

Celebrating the Holidays Safely

Help prevent drinking and driving this holiday season with campaign resources from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). These campaigns provide animated graphics, fact sheets, sample news releases and op-eds, and Spanish-language materials.

Date: 12/17/2019

New SAMHSA resources for college drinking prevention, substance misuse prevention, and mental health

New SAMHSA resource focuses on embracing culture and context for prevention strategies

Historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) educate students in a culturally specific context, which calls for a tailored approach to underage drinking prevention. The second episode in SAMHSA’s College Drinking: Prevention Perspectives series, Embracing Culture and Context to Prevent Underage Drinking, shows how HBCUs have created prevention strategies that meet the unique needs of a campus community with a strong history and culture.

Prevention Technology Transfer Centers (PTTC) Resources

The SAMHSA-funded PTTC Network provides technical assistance and learning resources for you to use in your substance misuse prevention efforts. Learn more about resources on the topic of underage drinking and alcohol misuse prevention.

SAMHSA Addresses Mental Illness and Substance Use in Young Adults

SAMHSA’s new public message on Mental Illness and Substance Use in Young Adults offers resources to support those concerned about someone who may be drinking too much, using drugs, or dealing with mental illness get the help they need.

Date: 11/14/2019

Prevention Resources for Underage Drinking and Marijuana Use; New Data About Alcohol Use

Preventing Underage Drinking and Marijuana Use

Communities Talk events primarily focus on underage drinking prevention. But the events also are a great opportunity to discuss other substance misuse and prevention-related topics that are important to your community, including marijuana use. Addressing the dangers associated with underage and young adult marijuana and alcohol use can increase the impact of your event and energize your community’s prevention work. SAMHSA’s Know the Risks of Marijuana webpage and SAMHSA’s “Talk. They Hear You.” campaign website have facts and materials for you to use when planning or hosting your Communities Talk event.

Back-to-School Season: An Opportunity to Help Parents and Caregivers Prevent Underage Drinking and Drug Use

A new school year often brings a fresh start for children and their families. It’s also a time to revisit conversations with children about alcohol and other drugs. Resources from SAMHSA’s “Talk. They Hear You.” national media campaign helps parents, caregivers, and other role models have conversations about alcohol and other drugs with children. Read SAMSHA’s blog by Johnnetta Davis-Joyce, M.A., Director of SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, for details about using the campaign in your prevention initiatives this school year.

Using Data to Mobilize Your Community

Community leaders, parents, and other concerned citizens become more invested in prevention when they learn how many adolescents and young adults begin using alcohol each year. You can use data from SAMHSA’s 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health to educate your community about underage drinking and get them engaged in prevention strategies.

Date: 10/09/2019

AlcoholFX: An Engaging App for Middle Schoolers. Plus, the Benefits of Images in Your Communities Talk Profile

SAMHSA’s AlcoholFX App Helps Educators Highlight Alcohol’s Effects on the Brain 
As an educator, you do important work every day to help youth in your community build healthier, brighter futures. Helping kids understand the consequences of using alcohol, and how alcohol can harm their brains, is key to ensuring they achieve their goals. Download SAMHSA’s AlcoholFX app for tablets at no cost to help share these messages.

Enhance Your Communities Talk Profile 
Thank you to everyone who added event flyers to their Communities Talk profile! Your flyers, event photos, and media coverage bring your events to life on the Find a Meeting map and offers other Communities Talk hosts ideas for their own activities. If you have not had a chance to share your flyers, photos, etc. for your event, please add them to your profile.

Date: 09/19/2019

Introducing the Communities Talk Toolkit! Plus, Tips for Year-Round Event Planning.

New Communities Talk Toolkit
Check out the new Communities Talk Event Host Toolkit. This all-inclusive guide has detailed information for first-time hosts and for those who want to expand the impact of their events. Be sure to read the social media section to find updated sample content for your Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages. The toolkit also includes updates on ways you can engage the media with your event.

Strategic Planning for Year-Round Underage Drinking Prevention
When developing your substance misuse prevention strategic plan, remember to include Communities Talk as part of your underage drinking prevention efforts. Effective prevention efforts begin with a strong strategic plan—a process for setting goals and objectives, and for determining how to achieve them and how to measure impact. SAMHSA has resources that will help you as you plan programs and evaluate results.

Date: 08/07/2019

Whatever Venue or Format Works in Your Community Works for Communities Talk! Plus, Tips for Using Your Planning Stipend.

Inside, Outside, Small, Virtual—Whatever Format Works in Your Community Works for Communities Talk!
Not all Communities Talk events need be large or follow a traditional meeting approach. Every community is unique, with different populations and different concerns about the causes and effects of underage drinking. A variety of venues and formats can be used to host an event, including hosting a virtual meeting using social media. Read on to learn how.

Using Your Planning Stipend
SAMHSA requires Communities Talk stipends be used to cover the costs of planning and hosting an event. The stipends can be used to cover the costs of printing promotional materials or for facilities rental, and there also are other creative ways to use the funds.

Date: 07/10/2019

Register Today for New SAMHSA Webinar on June 25! Leading the Way: Maximizing the Power of Youth and Young Adult Leadership in Communities Talk

Join us for a webinar on June 25 from 2–3 p.m. EDT to hear from an all-youth panel about how to engage youth and young adults in underage drinking prevention strategies.

Date: 06/20/2019

Social Media to Promote your Event, #CommunitiesTalk Twitter Chat, and Upcoming Webinar: Maximizing the Power of Youth and Young Adult Leadership

Using Social Media to Promote Your Communities Talk Event
The Communities Talk Social Media Guide provides tips for using social media, from selecting platforms to guidelines for writing and posting content. SAMHSA also provides sample content to promote your event.

#CommunitiesTalk Twitter Chat
The National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA) co-hosted a Twitter chat with Communities Talk about preventing and reducing college student drinking. The chat discussed groups that are most at-risk for binge drinking among college students, activities and programs that have worked on college campuses, and resources used for planning underage drinking prevention programs on campus.

Upcoming Webinar: “Leading the Way: Maximizing the Power of Youth and Young Adult Leadership in Communities Talk” on June 25 at 2:00 p.m. EDT
Register now for SAMHSA’s Communities Talk webinar featuring insights from youth presenters on increasing youth engagement in your underage drinking prevention efforts.

Date: 06/05/2019

Join the #CommunitiesTalk Twitter Chat on June 4 at Noon EDT

Join colleges, universities, students, staff, and the larger prevention community for a Twitter chat to learn more about underage drinking prevention strategies on campus.

Date: 05/31/2019

Spread the word about Communities Talk and get involved in the National Prevention Week #PreventionChampion challenge

Is your organization hosting a Communities Talk event this year? Register now to receive a planning stipend!

Be sure to keep in mind that you do not need to set a firm date or select a venue to register. If your Communities Talk event will take place by December 31, 2019, you can receive a planning stipend.

Spread the word!
Your colleagues from other community organizations or institutions of higher education can request information about hosting a Communities Talk event and may qualify for a planning stipend. Encourage them to contact info@stopalcoholabuse.net.

Participate in the National Prevention Week Prevention Challenge today!
SAMHSA is inviting you to participate in the NPW 2019 Prevention Challenge! This is a great activity to integrate into your Communities Talk event - set up a backdrop for photos or a "selfie station" and ask participants to take photos and videos of their underage drinking Prevention Champions at the event. Remember to use the hashtags #PreventionChampion and #NPW2019.

Date: 05/08/2019

Leveraging Alcohol Awareness Month and National Prevention Week

Leveraging Alcohol Awareness Month and National Prevention Week 

April is Alcohol Awareness Month, which is the perfect opportunity for your community to focus on underage and harmful drinking prevention. Plus, learn how Communities Talk events have contributed to national progress in reducing underage drinking rates in SAMHSA’s recent blog post from Luiz Vasquez, LICSW, Acting Director, SAMHSA Center for Substance Abuse Prevention.

Join communities across the nation in celebrating SAMHSA’s National Prevention Week (NPW) May 12–18, 2019. Tuesday, May 14, focuses on the prevention of underage drinking and alcohol misuse. 
Tell us about your event and be a 2019 Success Story!

Following your event, you will receive an e-mail survey. Please complete the survey to share the positive impact the Communities Talk initiative has had on preventing and decreasing underage drinking in your community. What you share about the results of your event could be highlighted on the Communities Talk Success Stories page.

Date: 04/11/2019

Webinar Archive: Leveraging Partnerships in Planning/Hosting a Communities Talk Event

Watch the archived webinar here.

On March 20, 2019, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) hosted a webinar with experts from around the country to discuss best practices for engaging partners in planning, hosting, and promoting a successful Communities Talk event. SAMHSA encourages audiences to view and share this video with their communities or any organizations they know that would be interested in hosting a Communities Talk event.

Date: 04/05/2019

Planning Stipends and Promoting Your Communities Talk Event

More about planning stipends

Completing your registration to host a SAMHSA-sponsored Communities Talk event ensures that you will receive your $750 planning stipend within 21 days. Watch the new step-by-step video tutorial (look for the video in the orange Event Host Log In box on the homepage) about how to register your event.

Promoting your Communities Talk event

Now that you’ve planned your event, you need a strategy to spread the word. The Communities Talk website has the tips and resources you need to promote your event. First, create a promotion plan and learn the best ways to implement it.

Date: 03/05/2019

Ready, Set, Go—2019 Communities Talk Meetings Have Begun!

The 2019 Communities Talk stipend cycle is now open! This year, the $750 planning stipends will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis. If you didn't receive an invitation to participate in this year's stipend cycle, e-mail info@stopalcoholabuse.net to request your stipend invitation. Be sure to include your organization's name and website to speed up the verification process.

As you begin planning, remember to check out the resources that are available on the Communities Talk website in the following list.

Date: 02/06/2019

SAMHSA Blog Update: 2019 Communities Talk Meetings to Prevent Underage Drinking

Read the latest SAMHSA blog post from Luis Vasquez, LICSW, Acting Director for SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, to learn about the 2019 Communities Talk Meetings to Prevent Underage Drinking initiative that will launch in late January.

Date: 01/24/2019

2019 Communities Talk Planning Stipends and January NASPA Conference

This year, SAMHSA will sponsor the seventh round of Communities Talk Meetings to Prevent Underage Drinking. Beginning in late January 2019, a limited number of $750 planning stipends will be available to help cover the costs of planning and holding a Communities Talk event.

If you’re attending the NASPA Alcohol, Other Drug, and Campus Violence Prevention Conference, you can attend the Communities Talk workshop, “Engaging Campuses and Communities as Partners to Address Underage Drinking: A strategic Framework” from 2:35 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. on Friday, January 18.

Date: 01/11/2019