Success stories demonstrate the many creative ways that event hosts are engaging their communities in underage drinking prevention and highlight key outcomes that help lasting impacts on communities.
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SAMHSA encourages its event organizers to customize their prevention events to meet the unique needs of their communities. Explore the Success Stories to learn how Communities Talk activities are working across the country, and see how other communities are measuring their success.
Drug Free Cecil has hosted several Communities Talk activities, but the 2019 event was different: It was run by high school students. The Drug Free Cecil Youth Coalition led the development of a Communities Talk rally, which began with several of them giving speeches in a local college auditorium. They also debuted the six PSAs they had developed the previous fall, which tackled underage drinking, vaping, marijuana, opioid misuse, OTC drug misuse, and tobacco—and pointed viewers to resources within the website for the Cecil County Opioid Misuse Prevention Coalition. More than 200 people—including children, teens, adults, state representatives, and county government officials—participated in the youth rally. Afterward, DFCYC held a health fair in the Cecil College parking lot with health and wellness vendors and organizations including the Cecil County Health Department, Cecil County D.A.R.E., Upper Bay Counseling, Recovery Center of America, NorthBay Adventure Camp, and Cecil County Public Schools.
At the Boys & Girls Club’s family night, held on November 13, 2019, the Keystone Club organized a table on behalf of the HELP Committee, where they distributed information to parents about the social host ordinance in Havre and fines associated with providing alcohol to underage youth. The "Talk. They Hear You." PSAs were playing on TV monitors so families could view them as they were waiting for their dinner, which helped start conversations at the Keystone Club table. There, high schoolers spoke with parents about the importance of starting the conversation with their children about expectations regarding alcohol. They even invited parents to practice by asking them questions as if they were their child. They also helped parents download the "Talk. They Hear You." app so they could practice speaking with their teens about alcohol. Between 175 and 200 people attended the family night, with a 60/40 split of youth to parents. Youth of all ages—not just high school students—attended.
For many students, college life holds plenty of new experiences—not all of them healthy. Along with FSU’s University Housing department, which handles infractions in residence halls with underage students and substance use, CHAW hosted an open forum for students on underage drinking, specifically to educate underage students on the university’s recently revised Medical Amnesty Policy. They also tackled issues such as marijuana use, binge-drinking, and alcohol-related overdoses.
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