What is the purpose of Celebrating Healthy Communities(CHC) Coalition? The overall purpose of this 24 year old coalition is to promote a healthy community to better support youth and families to thrive. The coalition is made up of a broad cross-section of the community meeting monthly to exchange ideas and leverage each other’s work.
What are Developmental Assets? Assets are protective factors. CHC uses the Search Institute evidence-based “Developmental Asset” framework that identifies 40 skills, relationships and values a young person needs to become a thriving, contributing adult. While Developmental Assets are based on research, they are also common sense. For example, a supportive, loving family is one of the 40 Developmental Assets. Learn more at the Search Institute, the developers of the Development Asset Framework.
How do the 40 Developmental Assets relate to drug and alcohol prevention? The Search Institute’s research shows that assets have the power to promote healthy choices and protect against poor ones. In other words, the more Assets a young person has the more likely they are to thrive and the less likely they are to engage in all types of risky behaviors including drug/alcohol use, skipping school, shoplifting, hitting someone, and suicide.
Are you prohibitionists? No. CHC recognizes that alcohol and marijuana are part of the culture of La Plata County. We focus our prevention efforts to underage residents to ensure young people can reach their full potential because research shows that drugs and alcohol can have lasting effects on developing brains/bodies. We also work to promote healthy, responsible norms because we know young people mirror the behavior modeled around them. One way CHC promotes healthy norms is through our Designated Driver Campaign. This joint effort between CHC and local bars and restaurants thank “DDs” with a free non-alcoholic drink.
Do you work in schools? CHC collaborates with schools as well as 11 other sectors of our community including civic organizations, law enforcement, government, youth serving organizations, businesses, media, religious/fraternal communities, health, parents and youth! Learn more about our partner organizations HERE.
Why focus on early teens? Local and national data shows that 8th and 9th grade years are times of tremendous change and experimentation.
Where does your funding come from? CHC is funded by a Drug Free Communities (DFC) Support Program grant and must receive equal financial and match contributions from our coalition partner organizations. The primary purpose of the DFC program is to:
Establish and strengthen collaboration among communities, public and private non-profit agencies; as well as federal, state, local, and tribal governments to support the efforts of community coalitions working to prevent and reduce substance use among youth.
- Reduce substance use among youth and, over time, reduce substance abuse among adults by addressing the factors in a community that increase the risk of substance abuse and promoting the factors that minimize the risk of substance abuse.
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