Recently, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo announced distribution of $25 million in federal funding to address the opioid crisis in New York State.
The Chautauqua Alcohol & Substance Abuse Council (CASAC) in Jamestown, NY was one of the award recipients and will receive $100,000 to provide evidence-based prevention programs to underserved, hard-to-reach youth, and other at-risk populations in the City of Dunkirk.
CASAC has established a collaboration with the Boys & Girls Club of Northern Chautauqua County and the Salvation Army’s After School Programs.
Youth and adults will have the opportunity to engage in the “Too Good” evidence-based after school program. This program focuses on prevention education through social and emotional learning, empowering youth and teens with skills needed for academic, social and life successes. Elementary and middle school students will engage in positive, engaging, age-appropriate activities including games, stories and songs.
The program reinforces basic prevention concepts, including decision-making, self-esteem building, coping skills, goal setting, assertiveness skills and conflict resolution. The high school curriculum involves interactive games and activities that provide practical guidance on dating and relationships, building healthy friendships, and refusing negative peer influence. The lessons foster analysis and discussion on the effects of alcohol, tobacco, other drug use, including prescription and over the counter drugs and various nicotine delivery devices.
In addition to providing prevention programs for youth, family engagement is also a key component of this initiative. CASAC will be offering the Active Parenting program to the Boys & Girls Club of Northern Chautauqua County and the Salvation Army. Active Parenting focuses on the following topics:
The last component of this initiative will involve providing intervention services for individual’s ages 12 and up that are using mildly to moderately. CASAC will also work with families that have a concern about a loved one with a substance use disorder. A Prevention Educator will be available to meet with families one-on-one for education, information and referral to other agencies, and resources available in Chautauqua County and Western New York.
Funding for this project is made possible by the State Targeted Response to the Opioid Crisis Grants through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). This new funding stream is anticipated to reach approximately 300 participants.
For more information:
Melanie Witkowski, Executive Director
Chautauqua Alcohol & Substance Abuse Council