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Youth Community Town-hall Discussion “A SERIOUS DISCUSSION AND SERIOUS SOLUTIONS CONCERNING UNDERAGE-AGE DRINKING”
Gang Alternative, Publix / Panera Bread and CVS
How does alcohol and other drug misuse affect your community?
Underage drinking and substance misuse affect our community because our youth do not understand their harmful effects, in large part because it is introduced to them at a young age by family members through cultural traditions. Some cultural traditions in our area involve alcohol consumption, and some community members believe that it’s OK for youth to drink as long as a parent or guardian is present to “supervise.”
What challenge(s) did you face in planning your activity this year?
- Lack of interest from the community
- Lack of awareness of our event or organization
- Inexperience hosting Communities Talk activities
How did you overcome these challenges?
To overcome our challenges, we researched CADCA resources and other community groups that held events beforehand to understand how our Communities Talk event should be conducted.
What are your next steps?
- Expand our coalition with new partnerships in the community
- Support new prevention policies, legislation, or social ordinances
- Conduct research efforts to learn more about issues in our community
- Create a public education campaign to raise awareness and/or change behaviors around underage drinking (i.e., create PSAs and other promotional materials)
Which Communities Talk resources (or other SAMHSA resources) were most helpful for your activity?
- StopAlcoholAbuse.gov website
- Communities Talk website
How did a Communities Talk event help you address those issues?
- Educated youth and parents
- Built community cohesiveness and support for our efforts
- Created an opportunity to share resources and practices with other community stakeholders
- Made making good health behavior choices fun and engaging
- Raised awareness of substance abuse and/or underage drinking issues in our community
How did your event make an impact on underage drinking in your community?
We had a successful event that allowed youth to understand the harmful effects that alcohol and illegal substances have on their bodies. We’re also pleased that we were able to connect with parents and explain the harms in introducing alcohol to youth and allowing them to drink under adult supervision.
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