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What’s New

Communities Talk What’s New articles share information to help event organizers plan, host, and evaluate events aimed at mobilizing a community around evidence-based prevention of underage drinking.

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.

Since 2006, communities across the country have held Communities Talk activities and events to help citizens get informed, prepare, and take action against underage drinking and other substance misuse. In 2021, your prevention activities will look a bit different as we continue to deal with the impacts of COVID-19. One thing that won’t need to change is your commitment to prevention!

There are many ways to hold virtual activities that adhere to health guidelines in your community. And you aren’t alone; virtual participation in Communities Talk is increasing. In 2019, 1 in 5 people participated virtually in the program. To help you participate in 2021, new materials and products are in development so that you can successfully maneuver the ever-changing prevention landscape.

If you’re interested in participating in the 2021 round of Communities Talk, keep an eye on your email inbox for your invitation in January! You can also email info@stopalcoholabuse.net to request an invitation if you don’t receive one. Until then, keep checking StopAlcoholAbuse.gov/communitiestalk for new products and ideas to mobilize your community in preventing underage and other substance misuse.

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). Below are specific NSDUH statistics you can use when planning, promoting, and hosting your Communities Talk activity.

Who used alcohol in the past month?

  • 19.9 percent of underage girls
  • 17.2 percent of underage boys

How many young people begin using alcohol each day?

  • 6,189 adolescents ages 12 to 17
  • 6,615 young adults ages 18 to 25

Who used marijuana within 2 hours of using alcohol?

  • 19.3 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds
  • 17.6 percent of 18- to 25-year-olds

Who heard or saw drug or alcohol prevention messages in school?

  • 70.3 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds
  • 67.6 percent of 16- to 17-year-olds