jump to navigation
Print    E-Mail   Share External link. Please review our Disclaimer 

Back to Success Stories

Story details header

Student Against Destructive Decisions(SADD) Summer Reading Program

Hosted by: SADD

Story details header

Please briefly describe your Communities Talk activity.

The Student Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) Summer Reading Program incentivized all NY SADD students to participate in a virtual opportunity to engage with books and stories that focused on substances and mental health. These stories varied from firsthand accounts of teens and adults experiencing addiction, to personal help books working on growing advocacy skills and leadership. This summer series allowed students to engage with one another from across the state on topics that can be controversial but presented students with a new perspective on current events and the concern over substance misuse.

Story details header

How does alcohol and other drug misuse affect your community?

New York State is a unique place for these issues, given the size of the state in general and the diversity in the communities within. There are spaces of great geographic remoteness, and others in more city-based environments, each with its own unique concerns related to substances and their availability and use. 

Story details header

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

  • Environmental Strategy - focuses on establishing or changing community standards, codes, and attitudes thereby influencing incidence and prevalence of alcohol and other drug use within the community. The strategy depends on engaging a broad base of community partners, focuses on places and specific problems, and emphasizes public policy.
  • Community-Based Process Strategy - focuses on enhancing the capacity of the community to address AOD issues through organizing, planning, collaboration, coalition building, and networking.
  • Education Strategy – focuses on “two-way” communication between the facilitator and participants and aims to improve life/social skills such as decision making, refusal skills, and critical analysis.
Story details header

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.
  • Start a youth-led coalition on alcohol and/or other drug misuse prevention.
Story details header

Did you accomplish your goal(s)?


Story details header

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

  • Adapting to conducting a virtual activity
  • Change in organizational structure or staff
Story details header

How did you overcome these challenges?

We persevered and engaged folks on our new members only platform to be able to directly reach SADD students.

Story details header

What are your next steps?

  • Host follow-up meetings or activities
  • 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)
Story details header

If you’ve conducted Communities Talk activities in prior years, how has your repeated participation contributed to progress in achieving your prevention goals?

Each year has provided us with a new opportunity to engage teens statewide in a campaign or activity that has been unique and different from what they've traditionally come to know as substance use prevention. We look forward to future years with this funding.

Story details header

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.

  • Youth-led organizations
  • Secondary schools
  • Colleges or universities
Story details header

Which of the following best describes the primary audience(s) for your Communities Talk activity?

  • Youth
  • Teachers or other education staff
  • Youth leaders (e.g., coaches, parks and recreation personnel, and scouting leaders)
  • American Indian or Alaska Native community members
  • Asian community members
  • Black or African American community members
  • Hispanic community members
  • Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander community members
  • Lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBTQ) community members
Story details header

How did you reach and engage your primary audience(s) to encourage them to participate in your activity?

We used all social media platforms and our membership only platform to promote this. 

Story details header

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

  • Prevention videos, such as College Drinking: Prevention Perspectives
  • Tips & Tools for Hosting a Virtual Event
  • StopAlcoholAbuse.gov website
  • Communities Talk website

Return to Success Stories