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Morgan County Substance Abuse Council- Spring Conference

Hosted by: Morgan County Substance Abuse Council

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Please briefly describe your Communities Talk activity.

We conducted a free daylong conference in Mooresville, Indiana, and “sold out” our registration at 100 attendees. Mt. Gilead Church offered us their large facility for free. We had over 25 booths of information, including from emergency medical service,, Parents of Addicted Loved Ones (PAL), Smoke Out, Department of Health, Addiction Recovery Facilities, Youth First, YMCA, and many more. Speakers included: 

  • Susan Elsworth, Director, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) United Network 

  • Angela Washburn, senior health equity analyst, Purdue University 

  • Ash Rathwell, training services manager, Domestic Violence Network  

  • Tina Hoffman, community health improvement coordinator, Franciscan Health  

We also featured The Addict’s Wake movie, a documentary that is about one community’s struggle in Brown County, Indiana, and how they are trying to illuminate the nation’s crisis. 

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How does alcohol and other drug misuse affect your community?

Morgan County is partially rural and partially suburban. The entire county has a population of less than 80,000. Like most small communities, it has a problem of a lack of positive youth activities. Underage drinking and vaping are major problems in the community. The majority of the overdoses in the county are from meth and fentanyl. 

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Which prevention strategy(ies), as defined by SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, best fit your Communities Talk activity?

  • Information Dissemination Strategy - focuses on improving awareness and knowledge of the effects of AOD issues on communities and families through “one-way” communication with the audience such as speaking engagements, health fairs, and distribution of print materials.
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What goal(s) did you hope to accomplish with your Communities Talk activity?

  • Hold meetings or discussion groups on alcohol and/or other drug misuse prevention.
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Did you accomplish your goal(s)?


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What challenge(s) did you face in planning your activity this year?

  • It turned out great. We were very pleased. The only concern was finding speakers who were low or little cost.
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How did you overcome these challenges?

Finding appropriate speakers can be difficult. Since the conference was free, it was hard to have the funds to pay for speakers. The Executive Director traded speaking services with one speaker and the others agreed to not charge for their presentations.

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What are your next steps?

  • Host follow-up meetings or activities
  • Expand our coalition with new partnerships in the community
  • We will conduct conferences twice a year. Once every Spring and one in the Fall.
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If you’ve conducted Communities Talk activities in prior years, how has your repeated participation contributed to progress in achieving your prevention goals?

The funds have allowed us to conduct these valuable conferences.

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Organizations that conduct Communities Talk activities often involve other organizations in the planning and execution of events. Please indicate which type(s) of organizations you involved in your activity planning.

  • Faith-based based organizations
  • Law enforcement
  • Youth-led organizations
  • Secondary schools
  • Colleges or universities
  • Local chapters of national organizations
  • Charitable organizations
  • Local businesses
  • State and local government agencies (e.g., public health departments)
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Which of the following best describes the primary audience(s) for your Communities Talk activity?

  • Parents
  • Teachers or other education staff
  • Prevention specialists and volunteers
  • Law enforcement officials
  • Doctors, nurses, or other health care professionals
  • Youth leaders (e.g., coaches, parks and recreation personnel, and scouting leaders)
  • Healthcare providers
  • Clergy
  • Black or African American community members
  • Hispanic community members
  • Lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBTQ) community members
  • Everyone is welcome and invited
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How did you reach and engage your primary audience(s) to encourage them to participate in your activity?

Word of mouth, social media, and community events 

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Which Communities Talk resources (or other SAMHSA resources) were most helpful for your activity?

  • StopAlcoholAbuse.gov website
  • Communities Talk website
  • Any stats that we could display were very beneficial.

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