Teens, Puberty, and Risk-Taking

July 15, 2015

Why do teens take risks when with their peers? The adolescent brain itself may be to blame.

Acting recklessly in front of peers stimulates pleasure centers in an adolescent’s brain, which further encourages this kind of risky behavior. Numerous studies have indicated that the mere presence of peers significantly increases an adolescent’s risk-taking propensities.  Brain-imaging technology illustrates how the pleasure centers in the brain of an adolescent light up when peers are watching them perform;  in fact, the more stimulation that the center receives, the more risks the teen will take.

Botvin LifeSkills Training (LST) is an evidence-based substance abuse prevention program proven to reduce the risks of alcohol, tobacco, drug abuse, and violence by targeting the major social and psychological factors that promote risky behaviors. Adolescents learn skills that can help them successfully handle challenging situations and resist their hard-wired impulses to take unhealthy risks. Instead, they learn ways to adopt healthy alternatives to dangerous behavior.

One student from Vero Beach, Florida, who completed the LST program stated that the program helped her to realize that “the most important thing is to set a good example and show pride. It’s not always about being a part of the coolest clique or looking the best.”  She has since encouraged other teens to “set goals, stand up for what you believe in, have fun, be confident, and make the most of life,”  adding, “All of this has been shown to me in LifeSkills and has helped me become a better person, inside and out.”

To read more testimonials by both students and teachers, please visit: LifeSkills Training Testimonials


New Study Explores Bystander Intervention in Cyberbullying

July 13, 2015

A recent study, “Bystander Intervention in Cyberbullying,” was published by the National Communication Association’s Communication Monographs. The study highlighted the impact of bystanders in cyberbullying situations as well as discussed why there is a lower likelihood that a bystander intervenes during an online bullying incident.

Students in the study group were placed in hypothetical cyberbullying situations. Their responses were observed in order to understand more about how bystanders react online, as opposed to witnessing traditional bullying in-person. Researchers determined that many factors affect a bystander’s tendency to not intervene in a cyberbullying.

The study revealed that there is a greater sense of anonymity in web sites, social media platforms, and online chat pages. Bystanders are less likely to intervene in cyberbullying incidents because they are not easily discernable as witnesses to bullying and may feel distant or not responsible for speaking up. Moreover, cyberbullying allows bystanders to seem “invisible” and, because of this anonymity, don’t take the initiative to speak up for the victims of bullying.

This study exposed the importance of spreading awareness about cyberbullying. The findings demonstrate the potential of schools and communities to educate their stakeholders about cyberbullying and how the role of the bystander has changed with the emergence of social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

National Health Promotion Associates is currently developing an online cyberbullying prevention learning tool to address the current issues and educate middle-schoolers on cyberbullying and bullying in general. This new online platform is an extension of Botvin LifeSkills Training’s “Stand Up, Speak Up!” bullying curriculum.

http://www.newswise.com/articles/new-study-explores-bystander-intervention-in-cyberbullying


National Health Promotion Associates Hosts Summer Interns

July 1, 2015

WHITE PLAINS, NY – National Health Promotion Associates (NHPA) welcomes a new class of interns for the 2015 summer program, Internship in Psychology, Health Education, and Communication.

interns 2015NHPA selected three interns from a crowded pool of extremely qualified applicants from colleges and universities around the country. This year’s interns include: Christopher Fox (Bates College), Samantha Goodman (University of Michigan), and Isabella Serrano (Brown University).

The interns will work on projects giving them a broad overview of the stages involved in developing educational prevention programs. The internship program will focus on issues related to health promotion and wellness, health communication and marketing, and the many facets of prevention.

“We are pleased to offer an internship in Psychology, Health Education, and Communication.  We are continually impressed by this group of students,” said Dr. Gilbert J. Botvin, the founder and president of NHPA. “They are bright, energetic and very well prepared by their previous course work. It is our hope that the interns return to their respective universities with a greater understanding of psychology in an applied setting. They are fully engaged in learning about a wide range of activities from early-stage conceptualization and evaluation of new prevention tools to the ultimate dissemination of new evidence-based preventive interventions. We are excited to have them spend time with us.”

Over the course of the summer, the interns will be involved in the development of numerous projects that employ Botvin Lifeskills Training (LST) at the National Health Promotion Associates headquarters. LST is an evidence-based prevention program for tobacco, alcohol and drug abuse, violence prevention, and bullying implemented in 38 countries around the world. Specifically, the interns will work on the application of the Botvin Lifeskills Training Program to the Youth Courts of Memphis Tennessee, help create an online cyber bullying prevention program, and take part in the development of an online sexual assault prevention program for college students.

About National Health Promotion Associates

Established in 1985, National Health Promotion Associates (NHPA) is a dynamic health and wellness firm located in White Plains, New York. Dedicated to promoting behavioral health, NHPA focuses on developing, evaluating, and providing training to educators and health professionals on a range of health and wellness programs. An area of particular interest relates to the prevention of health risk behaviors among adolescents and young adults, including substance abuse, violence, bullying, and sexual violence. For more information visit: www.lifeskillstraining.com.


Free webinar: Learn grant-writing tips for the ‘Skills for Success’ Grant Competition

June 25, 2015

Recent research shows that students who graduate ready to succeed in college and careers have more than just academic skills. The most successful students pair cognitive skills with additional skills such as persisting through adversity, collaborating effectively and exercising self-discipline.

While we know that these additional skills are important, we want to learn more about the best ways to nurture them in our schools and classrooms. That’s why the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Innovation and Improvement announced an exciting new grant competition called Skills for Success.

They’re asking the nation’s most innovative education organizations, schools and districts to apply so that they can learn even more about how to give students these important skills. In particular, they’re focusing on middle grades – that time when students begin developing the habits and mindsets that they will take with them through life.

If you are part of an organization, school district or other team that’s working on giving middle school students all the skills they need to succeed, they would love to have you apply. Learn more.

Register for this free webinar for grant-writing tips:

Strategies for Incorporating LifeSkills Training into an Effective   2015 Skills for Success Program Grant Application

This informative webinar will explore successful grant-writing tips while incorporating the LifeSkills Training program into the US Department of Education’s Skills for Success application. Our goal is to help you be as informed as possible about the grant application process while supporting the inclusion of our program as a part of your comprehensive submission.

Duration: 30 minutes

Presenter: Pamela Werb, MEd, has been an LST trainer since 2001 and presented at national and international conferences. She graduated with a master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction from University of Minnesota and is currently a clinical research consultant with the University of Minnesota Tobacco Use Research Center.

Register: Monday, June 29th at 3:30pm ET  Space is limited    

Skills for Success Program

Grant: The Skills for Success Program supports Local Educational Agencies (LEAs) and their partners in implementing, evaluating, and refining tools and approaches for developing the non-cognitive skills of middle-grades students in order to increase student success. Grants provide funding for the implementation, evaluation, and refinement of existing tools and approaches that integrate the development of students’ non-cognitive skills into classroom-level activities and existing strategies designed to improve schools.

Funder: US Department of Education

Eligibility: Local educational agencies (LEAs), i.e., public school districts including charter schools that are considered LEAs under State law, and LEAs in partnership with a nonprofit, IHE or other LEAs

Estimated Available Funds: approximately $2,000,000 for FY2015

Deadline: 7/29/15


The need for prevention is now; Unleashing the Power of Prevention

June 24, 2015

Every day across America, behavioral health problems in childhood and adolescence take a heavy toll on millions of lives. These problems range from anxiety, depression and mental health problems, to poor eating habits and weight problems, to substance abuse, delinquency and violence. For decades the approach to these problems has been to treat them only after they’ve been identified—at a high and ongoing cost to young people, families, communities, and the entire nation. Now we have a 30-year body of research and more than 50 programs showing that behavioral health problems can be prevented.

LifeSkills Training is one such program. LST is a school-based prevention program designed to prevent behavioral health problems by promoting personal coping skills, general social skills, and information and attitudes related to specific health problems, and overall resilience. LST has been extensively tested and proven effective, with evidence of its effectiveness documented in over 32 peer-reviewed publications. This body of research shows that LST can prevent a wide range of behavioral health problems including tobacco, alcohol, and illicit drug abuse; aggression and violence; risky driving; and risk factors related to HIV/AIDS. LST is effective when delivered by different types of program providers, under different implementation conditions, and with different populations and age-groups. And, it produces prevention effects that can last from adolescence to well into young adulthood.

But LST is just one of a growing number of tested and effective programs that have emerged from more than three decades of scientific research. This critical mass of prevention science is converging with growing interest in prevention across health care, education, child psychiatry, child welfare, and juvenile justice. Together, we stand at the threshold of a new age of prevention.

The challenge now is to mobilize across disciplines and communities to unleash the power of prevention on a nationwide scale. A new group of prevention experts, the Coalition for the Promotion Behavioral Health, proposes a grand challenge that will advance the policies, programs, funding, and workforce preparation needed to promote behavioral health and prevent behavioral health problems among all young people—including those at greatest disadvantage or risk, from birth through age 24. Within a decade, we can reduce the incidence and prevalence of behavioral health problems in this population by 20 percent from current levels through widespread policies and programs that will serve millions and save billions. Prevention is the best investment we can make, and the time to make it is now.

Read two recent papers on Unleashing the Power of Prevention, prepared by the Coalition for the Promotion of Behavioral Health and published by the National Academy of Medicine. The first paper, Unleashing the Power of Prevention, is concise summary of the advances in prevention science, examples of successful prevention programs, and opportunities.

http://nam.edu/perspectives-2015-unleashing-the-power-of-prevention/

The second paper, A Challenge to Unleash the Power of Prevention, is a commentary and call to arms.

http://nam.edu/perspectives-2015-a-challenge-to-unleash-the-power-of-prevention/


College Rape Prevention Program Proves a Rare Success

June 23, 2015

A trial published in the New England Journal of Medicine found a lowered risk of rape in college women who participated in an experimental sexual assault prevention program in Canada this past year.  This program addressed preventing sexual assault through a multifaceted approach, including defense skills, defining sexual boundaries, assessing and avoiding risky behavior like drugs and alcohol.

The study produced significant results: the risk of completed rape was lowered by 10 percent in the women who participated in the program, compared to 5 percent in the control group. Even more significant was the lowered risk of attempted rate in the resistance group–9.3%–compared to the 3.4% reduction in the control group.

This promising study highlighted key elements that are unique to other sexual assault prevention programs implemented at other colleges and universities at the moment. The program focused not only on education and prevention, but also on developing self-defense skills and increasing knowledge and awareness about acquaintance rape among other instances of sexual assault. However, there are arguments that the program focuses on helping potential victims avoid sexual assault rather than focusing on preventing perpetrators from attempting assault.

One important area that was focused on in this program was acquaintance rape and overcoming emotional barriers that victims of sexual violence face. Because the majority of sexual violence occurs between acquaintances, this program was successful because it focused on consent and helped college women understand how to maneuver social situations and use friends as bystanders.

Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/12/health/college-rape-prevention-program-proves-a-rare-success.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=mini-moth&region=top-stories-below&WT.nav=top-stories-below


Indoor E-Cigarette Vaping Banned in Albany County, NY

June 19, 2015

Legislatures in Albany County, New York voted on Monday to ban the use of electronic cigarettes in areas where cigarette smoking is already banned.  The Clean Indoor Air Act of 2003 banned cigarette smoking in most workplaces, including bars and restaurants, in the state of New York.  This new measure to ban e-cigarette usage still awaits the signature of County Executive Dan McCoy, who has already banned vaping in and around county buildings.  Cattaraugus, Lynbrook, Suffolk, and Tompkins counties in New York have already put in place the similar bans on e-cigarettes.

According to a report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, electronic cigarette use has more than tripled among youths in the past year.  E-cigarettes are designed to allow users to inhale the vaporized nicotine liquid without any actual smoke.  This allows users to not have to worry about inhaling fumes from the papers of cigarettes and other toxic chemicals, which could be carcinogenic.  Although the safety risks of e-cigarettes are not fully researched, evidence suggests that e-cigarettes are safer than tobacco cigarettes.  However, they still contain nicotine, a highly addictive substance, and users can suffer from withdrawal symptoms after quitting e-cigarettes including feeling irritable, depressed, restless, and anxious.

There is also a concern that e-cigarettes could be a gateway drug that leads nonsmokers and kids to using tobacco cigarettes.  Some makers of e-cigarettes seem to be targeting younger audiences with flavored cartridges like vanilla or cherry.


University Tackles Sexual Assault Before The Parties Start

June 18, 2015

According to a National Public Radio broadcast, 1 in 4 women and 1 in 10 men will experience sexual assault or violence in their lifetimes, the most vulnerable time being associated with college life and the ages 18 to 25. The U.S. Department of Justice Policing Services found that college women are more at risk for sexual assault than women of the same age that are not in college, and estimated that 25% of college women have been victims of rape.

Sexual assault prevention has become an important issue for college and university campuses to stop ignoring and address directly. Especially for incoming students who have not yet become accustomed to campus culture, awareness and knowledge about sexual assault and violence is essential. As a result, many institutions have implemented a variety of prevention programs, such as conferences, workshops, online courses, and forums, in order to increase awareness about sexual violence and assault and to promote the role of the bystander.

At the University of New Hampshire, one such prevention approach includes an online seminar that is taken by incoming first-year students before arriving on campus. It is designed to stimulate discussions between students and their parents and family about sexual assault in order by providing talking points and online resources and statistics in order to anticipate potential situations and instances of vulnerability for students. In the year since its implementation, the university’s Sexual Harassment and Rape Prevention Program (SHARPP) has received two state awards, including the 2015 Presidents’ Leadership Award.

Another approach for preventing sexual violence is being developed by National Health Promotion Associates (NHPA) through funding by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Based on the Botvin Lifeskills Training program, this sexual violence prevention program will focus on issues that tackle topics of sexual violence as well as related issues of drug and alcohol abuse and risky behavior. This “holistic” approach will encourage discussions and awareness about difficult topics and help college students develop life skills that will help them throughout their college years and beyond.


Learning from Life Skills Programs in Drug Education

June 17, 2015

Life skills education is an interactive process of teaching and learning, which is being adopted around the world as a means to empower young people in challenging situations and is the recommended approach to children and young people’s personal, social and health development within formal and informal education settings.

In particular, life skills are a group of psychosocial competencies and interpersonal skills that help people make informed decisions, solve problems, think critically and creatively, communicate effectively, build healthy relationships, empathize with others, and cope with and manage their lives in a healthy and productive manner.

1049036_10151688401005857_110993943_oThis paper focuses on two programs, LifeSkills Training and Unplugged, which have shown to be effective in RCTs at reducing drug use among young people. Many of the elements described below are shared with other programmes, but these two were chosen because of their strong evidence base. LifeSkills Training has been developed over three decades in the United States and is now widely used there. There are several programmes available. The elementary school and middle school programmes each take place over three years and are approximately equivalent to Key Stages 2 and 3 in the English and Welsh system. Shorter programmes are also available for older students.

Read the full paper here via LifeSkills Training: News Detail.


Community Crime Prevention Grant Program – Indianapolis Foundation

June 16, 2015

Grant: Community Crime Prevention Grant Program (which includes Phase I and II) supports community-based organizations that can demonstrate community impact. Phase II grants are one-year grants and will be awarded in the fall of 2015. Applications for Phase II will be available on July 1, 2015, at cicf.org. Phase II, The Indianapolis Foundation will consider organizations that clearly demonstrate an immediate intentionality around crime prevention and support programming that:

  • Prevents violent crimes among residents
  • Provides prevention or intervention services to adults or youth facing unique challenges
  • Improves neighborhood safety
  • Partners with public agencies to help reduce or prevent crime in our community

Funder: The Indianapolis Foundation, an affiliate of Central Indiana Community Foundation

Eligibility: Organizations must be a 501(c)(3) charitable organization or a public entity partnering with a 501(c)(3) charitable organization as a fiscal agent in order to be eligible for grant consideration.

Amount: Phase II grants will range between $5,000 and $100,000

Deadline: July 31, 2015.

Contact: For additional information, contact Alicia Collins at alicia@cicf.org or (317) 634-2423.

via Home – Central Indiana Community Foundation.


LifeSkills Battles Teen Drug Use | News | witf.org

June 15, 2015

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(Harrisburg) — The Wolf Administration is hoping more schools in the commonwealth will adopt a program that seems to be effective at curbing teenage drug use.

The LifeSkills Training program is designed, not to scare kids away from using drugs, but to build up their self-confidence and encourage them to make smart decisions.

The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency subsidizes the program. Chairman Josh Shapiro says survey results show students are responding well in the 93 schools where the program is already in the works.

Helping kids avoid illegal drug use not just sets them on a path to college and better jobs, but Shapiro says it also saves the state money, about 34-hundred dollars for each student.

via Lifeskills Battles Teen Drug Use | News | witf.org.


Lady Gaga and NY Gov. Cuomo Collaborate to Fight Sexual Assault on Campus

June 11, 2015

Lady Gaga and Governor Andrew Cuomo have teamed up to push for legislation challenging the rise of sexual violence at universities across the United States.  Lady Gaga, who was sexually assaulted at age 19, has joined forces with Gov. Cuomo, who introduced the bill last year.  The powerful pair is hoping to convince New York State lawmakers to adopt the legislation against sexual assault on college campuses before the jurisdictive session ends on June 17th.  If passed, the law will be the strongest of its kind in the nation.sh

In 2014, every public university in New York State was mandated to adopt Gov. Cuomo’s policy against sexual assault.  However, private colleges do not have to follow the same guidelines, leaving students at private institutions vulnerable. The proposed bill would extend a far-reaching sexual assault prevention and response policy to all universities in New York State, whether private or public.

The regulatory action is based on an existing law that has previously been implemented in California and places emphasis on four key ideas:

  1. Affirmative consent language
  2. Immunity from drug or alcohol violations for students reporting an assault
  3. Bill of rights for the victim
  4. Policy training for all school officials

According to SAAM’s 2015 Sexual Assault Awareness Campaign Brochure, 1 in 5 women and 1 in 16 men are sexually assaulted while in college and more than 90% of sexual assault victims on college campuses do not report the assault (National Sexual Violence Resource Center).  In the words of the Governor of New York himself, “Enough is Enough.”

To report a sexual assault on a New York college campus to the State Police, call the dedicated 24-hour hotline at 1-844-845-7269. In an emergency, call 911. For confidential support resources, call the New York State Domestic and Sexual Violence Hotline at 1-800-942-6906. In New York City, call 1-800-621-HOPE (4673) or dial 311.

Credit: The Thomson Reuters Foundation, that covers humanitarian news, women’s rights, corruption and climate change. Visit www.trust.org


Presidential candidates talk about drug abuse on campaign trail

June 10, 2015

Substance abuse is now one of the leading causes of death in the United States, even more than traffic accidents. As the election of 2016 comes closer, presidential candidates are extending their campaign speeches to focus on prevention, specifically on drug abuse, according to National Public Radio.

Across partisan lines, drug policy and prevention has become a major focus on political agendas and campaigns, leading to an increased opportunity for prevention funding in the upcoming years. What is being called the “hidden epidemic” – the increase in drug abuse across the country is being highlighted and unmasked in discourses by politicians as addiction and substance abuse is becoming a dangerous problem for an increasing number of people.

At a recent campaign event, Hillary Clinton publicized the importance of drug prevention and the importance of addressing not only substance abuse but also mental health issues. She stated that spreading awareness and reducing stigma behind these issues would play an important part in her campaign efforts.

Governor Chris Christie has also discussed substance abuse on numerous occasions, including on a visit to Farnum Center for drug and alcohol abuse in Manchester, New Hampshire. Christie argues that there should be more resources allocated for reducing substance abuse and increasing funding treatment programs.

This focus on prevention and drug abuse could lead to an increase in funding for evidence-based prevention programs. These programs have been proven to lower the economic costs of welfare and social services and treatment for mental health and substance abuse problems, leading to cost-effective, long-term solutions to these serious issues. Schools, groups, and organizations implementing programs that focus on prevention, such as the Botvin Lifeskills Training (LST) program, could reap the benefits of these funding increases and spread awareness and help reduce drug abuse.

http://www.npr.org/sections/itsallpolitics/2015/05/28/410306003/drug-addiction-on-the-rise-cropping-up-as-campaign-trail-issue


Teenagers Seek Health Information Online, but Don’t Always Trust It

June 8, 2015

Four out of five teenagers look to the Internet for information regarding health, but they don’t always put much stock in what they find, according to a national survey conducted by researchers at Northwestern University.

image 4The report suggests that some online health content is neither relevant nor easily located by teenagers.  Researchers and developers at NHPA have been busy adapting the LifeSkills Training program to a progressive, technologically savvy demographic – teens.  The evidence-based prevention program has proven to be successful time and time again, so the methods of presentation must be constantly adapted and revised to reach the intended audience.

The survey indicates that despite this lack of trust, one in three teenagers have changed their behavior because of what they’ve learned from online sites or apps.  Vicky Rideout, the designer of the survey, states that this phenomenon proves the independence of teens and their ability to take care of their own health.  Most teenagers said that they read the first few sites that exposed in an online search, rather than investigating further. The information often did not directly speak to their concerns or was densely written.

“Sometimes all the sites have everything different and it’s like, which applies to me?” said an 11th-grade girl in a focus group organized by NHPA researchers.  How many more teens might have changed their behavior when given the online tools necessary for prevention?


Summer Training Workshop Schedule

June 2, 2015

LifeSkills Provider Training Workshops prepare teachers, school counselors, prevention specialists, police officers, community youth educators, and other program providers to effectively implement the state-of-the-art prevention education activities and teaching strategies found in the LST program.

Each workshop plays an important role in enhancing the confidence and skill capacity of participants, resulting in optimal implementation of the LST program. While training is not required, it is highly recommended in order to achieve optimal program results. Training increases the effectiveness of the program and assists providers to develop implementation strategies for the programs comfort and fit in individual sites

Online Training Workshops – Flexible and convenient; these provider training workshops are accessible from your work or personal computer. Enroll early to save!

Click here to view the full Summer schedule (check back for future dates).

On-Site Training Workshop – We can send a trainer to you! To obtain a quote or request an on-site training workshop, email training@nhpamail.com or call 800-293-4969.

Training of Trainers (TOT) Workshop – This two-day advanced training workshop teaches you how to deliver and conduct LST workshops for your organization. Eligibility limited to those who complete an LST workshop and implement the program for at least one full semester.

Next TOT workshop date: TBD*

 *Help us decide where we should host our next workshop! Email training@nhpamail.com with your suggestions.


Fighting addiction before it starts | The Recorder

May 19, 2015

The Franklin Regional Council of Governments was among 26 municipalities and institutions awarded $2.9 million in grants through the Department of Public Health Monday, money the administration said is intended to combat opioid abuse before it starts.

Locally, it means continued life for the Communities that Care Coalition’s efforts.

Rachel Stoler, the Council of Government’s Partnership for Youth co-coordinator, said the Partnership has held a grant for the past seven years or so on behalf of the Communities that Care Coalition to address underage drinking. The money has been used for compliance checks and social marketing and social norms campaigns, and teacher trainings in the Botvin LifeSkills curriculum to prevent youth substance abuse and violence.

via Fighting addiction before it starts | The Recorder.


This week is National Prevention Week

May 18, 2015

National Prevention Week is a SAMHSA-supported annual health observance dedicated to increasing public awareness of, and action around, substance abuse and mental health issues. National Prevention Week 2015 will take place May 17-23, 2015. Be sure to use the hashtag #Chooseprevention for all social media postings related to national prevention week!

The theme for 2015 is “The Voice of One, the Power of All.”

Purpose of National Prevention Week

There are three primary goals of National Prevention Week:

  • To involve communities in raising awareness of behavioral health issues and in implementing prevention strategies
  • To foster partnerships and collaboration with federal agencies and national organizations dedicated to behavioral and public health
  • To promote and disseminate quality behavioral health resources and publications

Why Does National Prevention Week occur in May?

National Prevention Week is held each year during the third week of May, near the start of summer. Summer is a season filled with celebrations and recreational activities where substance use and abuse can happen, such as graduation parties, proms, weddings, sporting events, and outdoor activities. National Prevention Week is timed to allow schools to take part in a prevention-themed event before the school year ends, raising awareness in students of all ages. The percentages of marijuana, cigarette, and alcohol initiates among youth increase between spring (April and May) and summer (June and July), and the timing of National Prevention Week helps to educate youth and their families at this crucial time of year.

Make the Timing of Your Event Fit Your Community

Most organizations conduct prevention activities throughout the year, culminating in a community-wide event during National Prevention Week. If there are circumstances that make scheduling an event at the end of May difficult, there are other ways to participate. For example, you may choose to hold events during another week in May leading up to National Prevention Week instead. You might also consider scheduling prevention activities before or after the third week of May to accommodate the needs of your community.

Here’s what matters most: your participation! No matter when you can hold your prevention event, getting involved is most important. Whenever you participate in National Prevention Week, you join the nationwide effort to prevent substance abuse and mental disorders, show others that prevention works, and support the health and well-being of your community.

How Communities Get Involved

During National Prevention Week, community organizations across the country host health fairs, block parties, educational assemblies, town hall meetings, memorial walks, social media campaigns, outdoor events, and more. Thousands of people across the United States and in U.S. territories attend these events and help raise awareness about the importance of preventing substance use and mental disorders.

2015 Daily Health Themes

  • Prevention of Tobacco Use – Monday, May 18
  • Prevention of Underage Drinking & Alcohol Abuse – Tuesday, May 19
  • Prevention of Opioid & Prescription Drug Abuse – Wednesday, May 20
  • Prevention of Illicit Drug Use & Youth Marijuana Use – Thursday, May 21
  • Prevention of Suicide – Friday, May 22
  • Promotion of Mental Health & Wellness – Saturday, May 23

Click here to learn more about the SAMSHA National Prevention Week and how you can get involved! 


Learn more about the LifeSkills Training Middle School program

May 13, 2015

LifeSkills Training Middle School program:  Effective and Engaging Prevention Education for Healthy and Drug-Free Youth

In this informative presentation, participants will explore the underpinnings of the Botvin LifeSkills Training (LST) Middle School program, review program levels and support, and gain insight into program fidelity and implementation options.

Are you considering implementing a quality evidence-based prevention program? Are you and or your colleagues interested in learning more about the field? Then join us at our webinar.

Duration:  30 minutes

Format:  Webinar

Cost: $0.00 (Space is limited)

About the Presenter:  Craig Zettle has presented at national and international conferences over the last 15 years.  He has been active in prevention education with the Botvin LifeSkills Training program for the last 10 years and regularly consults with schools, districts, federal and state agencies, as well as community-based organizations on the implementation and support of the Botvin LifeSkills Training program. 

Register: Wednesday, May 20th at 11am EDT Attendees will be entered into a raffle for a complimentary LifeSkills Online Training  for one person.


New Approach for Preventing Sexual Violence among College Students

May 5, 2015

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., May 5, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — One in five college students experiences sexual assault during their college career, and a New York-based health and wellness company is working to help change that. National Health Promotion Associates (NHPA) has been awarded a grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to develop and evaluate an effective approach to preventing sexual violence. This new program for incoming college students will be based on the science of the Botvin Life Skills Training (LST) program. LST has been tested in over 30 peer-reviewed studies and proven to dramatically cut teen alcohol, drug abuse, and violence—in some cases by as much as 80%. These studies show that the LST program yields reductions in excessive alcohol use, illicit drug use, and violence with different populations, providers, and delivery formats. The studies also show that the effects are long-lasting, with evidence of prevention effects lasting well into young adulthood.

The new sexual violence prevention program will take a holistic approach. Students will learn important life skills for handling the challenges of everyday college life, enhancing the development of general personal and social competence, and increasing overall resilience.

“We are excited about receiving this funding from NIH, and look forward to this opportunity to develop and test an innovative program that will stop sexual violence before it ever begins,” said Dr. Gilbert J. Botvin, developer of the LifeSkills Training program, professor emeritus of Cornell University’s Weill Medical College, and president of NHPA. “Since sexual violence often occurs while people are under the influence of alcohol or drugs, it is important that prevention programs focus on alcohol and drug abuse as well as sexual violence.”

During the first phase of this NIH-funded project, researchers will develop and test sample materials for the new program to determine their relevance, utility, and appeal among college students, faculty, and administrators. The resulting data will guide the development of the full program and test its effectiveness in a large-scale national study involving 40 college campuses.

Dr. Kenneth Griffin, Senior Research Scientist at NHPA and director of the team developing the new program, added that “this new program will use a series of interactive web-based and face-to-face learning activities to change social norms surrounding alcohol/drug abuse and sexual violence, train bystanders to recognize and respond to high-risk situations, and help college students develop the kind of skills that lead to healthy relationships.”

Established in 1985, National Health Promotion Associates (NHPA) is a dynamic health and wellness firm located in White Plains, New York. Dedicated to promoting behavioral health, NHPA focuses on developing, evaluating, and providing training to educators and health professionals on a range of health and wellness programs. An area of particular interest relates to the prevention of health risk behaviors among adolescents and young adults, including substance abuse, violence, bullying, and sexual violence. For more information visit: www.lifeskillstraining.com.

Contact: Paulina Kalaj 800-293-4969 pkalaj@nhpamail.com

Dr. Kenneth W. Griffin holds a Ph.D. from the State University of New York (Stony Brook) and an MPH from Columbia University, Dr. Griffin is currently a senior research scientist at NHPA and an adjunct professor of healthcare policy and research at Cornell University’s Weill Medical College in New York City.


Register for this free webinar

April 14, 2015

LifeSkills Training Middle School program:  Effective and Engaging Prevention Education for Healthy and Drug-Free Youth 

In this informative presentation, participants will explore the underpinnings of the Botvin LifeSkills Training (LST) Middle School program, review program levels and support, and gain insight into program fidelity and implementation options.

Are you considering implementing a quality evidence-based prevention program? Are you and or your colleagues interested in learning more about the field? Then join us at our webinar.

Duration:  30 minutes

Format:  Webinar

Cost: $0.00 (Space is limited)

About the Presenter:  Craig Zettle has presented at national and international conferences over the last 15 years.  He has been active in prevention education with the Botvin LifeSkills Training program for the last 10 years and regularly consults with schools, districts, federal and state agencies, as well as community-based organizations on the implementation and support of the Botvin LifeSkills Training program.

Register: Two live webinars to choose from. Wednesday, April 15th at 10am ET (7am PT) or April 15th at 1pm ET (10am PT). Attendees will be entered into a raffle for a complimentary LifeSkills Online Training  for one person.


SAMHSA Announces Funding to Prevent Substance Abuse – Applications due 5/26

April 8, 2015

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) Center for Substance Abuse Prevention (CSAP) has issued a funding opportunity announcement under its fiscal year 2015 Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) Partnerships with Community-Based Organizations (CBOs) grants.  Known by its short title “MSI CBO grants,” the purpose of this program is to prevent and reduce substance abuse and transmission of both HIV and hepatitis C virus (HCV) among at-risk young adults (ages 18-24), including African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders, and American Indians/Alaska Natives. The program seeks to address behavioral health disparities among racial and ethnic minorities by encouraging the implementation of strategies to decrease the differences in access, service utilization and outcomes among the racial and ethnic minority populations served.

To meet the needs of the program’s target populations, CSAP expects MSIs to partner with one or more CBOs to provide integrated substance abuse, HCV, and HIV prevention programs. Eligible MSIs include Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs), Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions (AANAPISIs), and Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs).

With $10.5 million in funding available, up to 35 three-year projects will be awarded. Applications are due May 26, 2015. Read more about this funding opportunity at SAMHSA’s website.


LifeSkills TOT Workshop Applications Due by 4/1

March 25, 2015

Do you want to conduct LifeSkills Training workshops for your organization? Become a Trainer of Trainers (TOT)! Just a few spots left in next month’s workshop. Registrations are due by 4/1. https://lifeskillstraining.com/uploaded_files/TOT%20Enrollment.pdf

Two-day advanced training workshop teaches participants how to deliver and conduct LifeSkills Provider Training Workshops for their organization. Click here for more information.tot


Social-Emotional Learning Pays Off

March 18, 2015

Education Week – Published in Print: March 18, 2015, as The Heart Payoff

A groundbreaking study from Columbia University, “The Economic Value of Social and Emotional Learning,” reveals what we call “the heart payoff.”

For many years, growing numbers of scholars and educators have been exploring the ways in which emotions and relationships contribute to learning. Under the broad umbrella of “social and emotional learning,” hundreds of researchers, teachers, administrators, and policymakers around the country have been trying to promote the social and emotional development of children and adults. At the same time, these pioneers are working to improve the culture of schools, the expectations of adults, the ways in which discipline is meted out, the mind-sets of learners, and the opportunities for young people’s expression, service, and aspiration.

Most people, when introduced to these kinds of social and emotional strategies, assume that they’re “nice”—maybe even “important.” But few think that developing healthy emotions and social connectivity is really a good return on investment.

But that’s the news from the Columbia study’s authors, Henry M. Levin and Clive Belfield. Over the last year, they examined the economic returns from investments in six prominent social and emotional interventions including LifeSkills Training.

Their findings are striking… significant benefits that exceeded costs…

The lead researcher told us, “These are unprecedented returns, particularly given that, while the estimates of the costs are clear, only a portion of the possible benefits are captured.” Benefits include reductions in child aggression, substance abuse, delinquency, and violence; lower levels of depression and anxiety; and increased grades, attendance, and performance in core academic subjects.

via LifeSkills Training: News Detail.


NYS OASAS is seeking funding proposals from not-for-profit community coalitions in New York State whose principal mission is the goal of reducing substance abuse among youth

March 3, 2015

New York State Partnership for Success:  The New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (NYS OASAS) announces the availability of funds to implement the Strategic Prevention Framework process at the community level. Communities in New York State that can demonstrate a high need to address prescription drug misuse and abuse, heroin abuse, and heroin opiate overdose among persons aged 12-25 and that possess a community coalition that can demonstrate a high capacity to address these issues, are eligible to participate in the competitive RFP process.

Eligible Applicants: NYS OASAS is seeking funding proposals from not-for-profit community coalitions in New York State whose principal mission is the goal of reducing substance abuse among youth. If the coalition does not have 501c 3 status or does not have an established fiscal agent with 501c 3 status, a NYS OASAS-funded prevention provider must act as the fiscal agent for the community coalition. Community coalitions that received funds through the previous SPF-SIG Prevention First NY! Initiative will not be eligible to apply for this Partnership for Success (PFS) funding. 

Bidders’ Conference:  A non-mandatory Bidders’ Conference will be held on Monday, March 16, 2015 from 9 a.m.-10:30 a.m. in Conference Room 2B at NYS OASAS’ main offices, located at 1450 Western Avenue, Albany, New York 12203.  Bidders may participate by telephone, or in person.. To confirm your attendance, please contact Filomena Bassotti at 518-485-6022 or filomenabassotti@oasas.ny.gov  by 5 p.m. Friday March 13, 2015.

via LifeSkills Training: Funding Opportunities.


Keep the Drinking Age High – NYTimes.com

February 10, 2015

Alcohol use in the United States is a serious public health concern, particularly among teenagers and young adults.

Recent results from a national survey found that by eighth grade, approximately 27 percent had used alcohol, which increased to 66 percent by 12th grade. Additionally, a second national survey indicated that among high school seniors, about 20 percent binge drank, consuming more than 5 drinks in one occasion, during the two-week period preceding the survey. Heavy drinking is associated with negative social, mental and physical health outcomes — including risk of violent behavior, sexual assault, accidents that cause injury, additional drug use, poor academics, legal troubles, and family and interpersonal problems. Those most likely to experience harm from heavy drinking are young people, particularly those of college age.

read more…via Keep the Drinking Age High – NYTimes.com.


Free Grant-writing webinar: Strategies for Incorporating LST into a Drug free Communities Grant

February 6, 2015

A critical component of writing a compelling grant application is to incorporate a program that is supported by an overwhelming body of evidence and a quality support system.  When quality and evidence matter in a grant application, LifeSkills Training is the right choice.             

                                       Click here to Register: Wednesday, February 11th, 3:00 p.m. EST*  

This informative webinar will explore successful grant-writing tips and strategies while incorporating the LifeSkills Training program into the Drug-Free Communities (DFC) grant.  Our goal is to help you be as informed as possible about the grant application process while supporting the inclusion of our program as a part of your comprehensive submission.

*Space is limited to Coalitions applying for DFC funding. Only 30 seats available on a first-come, first-served basis. Webinar will be available on-demand starting 2/12 for those who cannot make the live session. Email pkalaj@nhpamail.com for details.

Drug-Free Communities ( DFC ) Support Program

 

Grant: The DFC Support Program aims to establish and strengthen communities, private nonprofit agencies, and Federal, state, local, and tribal governments and entities to collaborate and support community-based efforts to prevent and reduce youth substance use.

 

Eligibility: Eligible applicants are community-based coalitions addressing youth substance use that have never received a DFC grant; or have previously received a DFC grant, but experienced a lapse in funding; or have concluded the first five-year funding cycle and are applying for a second five-year funding cycle.

 

Amount: 170 grants will be awarded of up to $125,000 each

 

Contact: For questions about program issues contact: DFC RFA Helpline Team, (240) 276-1270, dfcnew@samhsa.hhs.gov; for Federal forms and budget questions contact Virginia Simmons, Division of Grants Management, (240) 276-1422, virginia.simmons@samhsa.hhs.gov

 

Deadline: March 18, 2015


SAMHSA is accepting applications for up to $28 million in Strategic Prevention Framework grants

January 26, 2015

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is accepting applications for fiscal year 2015 Strategic Prevention Framework Partnerships for Success State and Tribal Initiative grants (SPF-PFS grants). The program is designed to address two of the nation’s top substance abuse prevention priorities: 1) underage drinking among persons aged 12 to 20; and 2) prescription drug misuse and abuse among persons aged 12 to 25. The SPF-PFS program is also intended to bring SAMHSA’s Strategic Prevention Framework (SPF) to a national scale.

SAMHSA expects up to 38 grantees will be awarded between 300,000 and $2.4 million per year for up to five years. The actual award amount may vary, depending on the availability of funds.

WHO CAN APPLY: Eligible applicants are states (including 2 U.S. Territories and 1 Pacific Jurisdiction) and tribal entities that completed a Strategic Prevention Framework State Incentive Grant (SPF-SIG) and are not currently receiving funds through SAMHSA’s SPF-PFS grants. See Section III-1 of the Request for Applications (RFA) for complete eligibility information.

HOW TO APPLY: You must go to both http://www.grants.gov and the SAMHSA website http://www.samhsa.gov/grants/applying to download the required documents you will need to apply for this SAMHSA grant.

Applicants must apply online through http://www.grants.gov. Please refer to Part II, Appendix B, “Guidance for Electronic Submission of Applications” for more information.

APPLICATION DUE DATE: March 16, 2015 at 11:59 p.m. (Eastern Daylight Time). Applications must be received by the due date and time to be considered for review. Please see and Part II, Section I of the application announcement for submission requirements.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Applicants with questions about program issues should contact Tonia Gray at (240) 276-2492 or tonia.gray@samhsa.hhs.gov. Kameisha Bennett can also be contacted on program issues at (240)-276-2586 or kamiesha.bennett@samhsa.hhs.gov.

For questions on grants management and budget issues please contact Eileen Bermudez at (240) 276-1412 or eileen.bermudez@samhsa.hhs.gov.

via SAMHSA is accepting applications for up to $28 million in Strategic Prevention Framework grants | PressReleasePoint.


Applications for minigrants sought for substance abuse prevention programs

November 13, 2014
The Local Prevention Council of Bristol (LPC) is requesting proposals from organizations serving the Bristol community to implement programs or initiatives that prevent or reduce the use of alcohol, tobacco products and other drugs. Proposals shall address one of the following prevention strategies: Environmental Change, Education, Information Dissemination, Problem Identification and Referral, and Healthy Alternatives with a message that clearly discourages substance use. Programs may also address other risky behaviors. The LPC mini-grant shall request that applicants demonstrate cultural competence concepts and responsiveness to diverse populations in all activities sponsored under the grant.

A total of $5,400 is available to be awarded. The mini-grant applications, with detailed instructions, are available on the websites of United Way of West Central Connecticut and Bristol Youth Services Department.

To request an application, call Cindy at Bristol Youth Services (860) 314-4690. Applications must be received by Tuesday, Dec. 2.

Funded projects must be completed by June 30, 2015.

Funding is being made available through the Substance Abuse Action Council.

Application deadline is 12/2/14

Click here for more info and links: http://www.lifeskillstraining.com/grants.php


As Seen on TV: Advertising’s Influence on Alcohol Abuse | The Science of Addiction

November 10, 2014

Excessive alcohol consumption is a leading cause of premature death in the U.S. and responsible for one in every 10 deaths. The statistics that describe the ways in which we drink ourselves to death are staggering. A study published in the journal Preventing Chronic Disease found that nearly 70% of deaths due to excessive drinking involved working-age adults. The study also found that about 5% of the deaths involved people younger than age 21.  Moreover, excessive alcohol use shortened the lives of those who died by about 30 years. Yes, 30 years.

One strong factor that reinforces the popular culture surrounding drinking is the glamour of advertising. Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health examined alcohol-advertising placements to determine whether the alcohol industry had kept its word to refrain from advertising targeting young people. This included television programs for which more than 30% of the viewing audience is likely to be younger than 21 years, the legal drinking age in every state.

via As Seen on TV: Advertising’s Influence on Alcohol Abuse | The Science of Addiction.


The Clever New Way TV Advertises Alcohol to Kids | Rebecca Jackson

October 30, 2014

We know that children and teenagers are particularly susceptible to advertising. We are aware that they are easily influenced by peer pressure. We see that they have a self-image that is fragile and is still being molded. Parents, educators and advertising executives are all aware of these simple truths…

via The Clever New Way TV Advertises Alcohol to Kids | Rebecca Jackson.


▶ Opioid Task Force To Implement LST Program In Schools – YouTube

October 9, 2014

The Opioid Task Force is taking vital steps to stop the use of drugs in Franklin County, Massachusetts. Franklin County middle schools will begin implementing the Botvin LifeSkills Training program in an effort to combat the rate of opiate use in the area.

“This is an incredibly effective program. Its been well researched and shown to have really impressive outcomes at reducing youth substance use as well as youth violence and other risky behaviors” said Kat Allen, Co-chair of Communities That Care Coalition.

The LifeSkills Training Program has proven to reduce tobacco, alcohol, and illicit drug use by 80%.

“It’s really positive. It focuses on things like communication skills, decision-making skills, conflict resolution, coping with anxiety, coping with anger,” said Allen.

via ▶ Opioid Task Force To Implement LST Program In Schools – YouTube.


$15k Grants for Life Skills Programs

September 3, 2014

Peyback Foundation – Grants for Programs which Directly Benefit Economically Disadvantaged Youth

Deadline: Feb. 1, 2015

“The PeyBack Foundation focuses primarily on economically disadvantaged youth. Emphasis is placed on programs that have a direct benefit to children through relationships and activities. Programs that are intended to enrich the lives of disadvantaged youth through activities conducted outside the typical school day (i.e., after-school and summer programming) are particularly favored by the Foundation. Our field of interest is in youth development. This includes:

Leadership and Life Skills – We are interested in supporting interactive programs that develop leadership skills and enhance character. Examples of programs: teaching youth how to identify their career or educational goal so they can become self sufficient; or programs that teach respect of self and others and provide cultural opportunities.

Mentoring – We are interested in programs that provide a caring adult who is working with disadvantaged youth. Programs include homework assistance, character building, improving self-esteem and confidence. The Foundation is interested in funding activities and programs that occur within the mentoring relationship, not adult volunteer training or recruitment.

After School/Summer Programming – The Foundation is especially interested in supporting programs that occur outside of a typical school day; i.e. after-school and summer programming.

Healthy Living – We are interested in programs that engage youth in physical activity and provide nutritious snacks and/or meals for youth participants. Consideration will be provided to programs that supply the necessary tools for a child to succeed educationally outside of the typical school environment.”

Funder: The PeyBack Foundation

Eligibility: Nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations operating in Colorado, Indiana, Louisiana, and Tennessee… “It is mandatory that grant applications come from organizations that work with children who are economically disadvantaged. Organizations must work with children between the ages of 6-18. The PeyBack Foundation will provide funding to support program-specific expenses, not general administrative expenses of an organization.”

Amount: Up to $15,000

via Peyback Foundation » Grant Program.


Apply now for tobacco-use prevention grants from VFHY | www.vfhy.org

August 18, 2014

Apply now for tobacco-use prevention grants from VFHY | http://www.vfhy.org

Deadline is 10/16/14

via Apply now for tobacco-use prevention grants from VFHY | www.vfhy.org.


California Department of Education – Tobacco Use Prevention Education Funding

July 17, 2014

Funding Name: American Indian Education Centers: Tobacco-Use Prevention Education Program

 

Eligible Applicants: nonprofit organizations, other organizations or agencies

 

Required Eligibility Criteria: Only state-funded American Indian Education Centers are eligible to apply. The applicant center must have met the commercial tobacco-free criteria, as outlined in the Request for Applications.

 

Funding Description: Funding is available for American Indian Education Centers to implement supplemental prevention education, intervention and cessation programs, and youth development programs directed at the reduction of commercial tobacco use among American Indian youth.

 

View at http://www.cde.ca.gov/fg/fo/profile.asp?id=3586


Program Structure – LifeSkills Training

July 8, 2014

The LifeSkills Training program is uniquely designed to be flexible and interactive. The program can be taught either on an intensive schedule (2-3 times a week) until the program is complete, or on a more extended schedule (once a week until the program is complete). Both formats have proven to be effective.

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While one year of LST has been proven to achieve measurable positive effects, multi-year implementation is strongly recommended.

http://www.lifeskillstraining.com/structure.php


HHS/CDC Releases Preventing Youth Violence: Opportunities for Action

July 1, 2014

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC)  Preventing Youth Violence: Opportunities for Action and its companion guide provide information and actions to help all community members be a part of the solution.

There are steps that community leaders and members, public health professionals, families, adults who work with youth, and young people can take today that can stop youth violence before it starts.

Learn More

Striving to Reduce Youth Violence Everywhere


HHS/CDC Releases 2013 Youth Risk Behavior Survey Results

June 23, 2014

On June 12, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s,  Division of Adolescent and School Health (DASH) released the 2013 national, state, and local Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) results on the YRBS website at www.cdc.gov/yrbs.

YRBS provides data representative of students in grades 9–12 attending U.S. high schools. It monitors six categories of priority health-risk behaviors among high school students—behaviors that contribute to unintentional injuries and violence; tobacco use; alcohol and other drug use; sexual behaviors that contribute to unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV infection; unhealthy dietary behaviors; and physical inactivity—plus the prevalence of asthma and obesity.

The release includes: 

* an MMWR Surveillance Summary that includes results from the 2013 National YRBS and from 42 state and 21 local YRBSs

* new fact sheets and summary documents

* an updated version of Youth Online – a web-based data system that allows users to view and analyze national, state, and local YRBS results

* an updated version of the YRBS Data Widget – a small web application that national, state, and local partners can place directly on their agency’s or organization’s website to help disseminate YRBS results quickly and conveniently

* public-use datasets and technical documentation

  For more information about the YRBS:

* Website: www.cdc.gov/yrbs

* Phone: 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636)

* E-mail: nccddashinfo@cdc.gov

* Follow us on Twitter: @DrZazaCDC


Another success story: Italy adapts Botvin LifeSkills Training | Prevention Hub

June 19, 2014

One of the most widely used school-based prevention programmes has proven to be effective in reducing drug use among adolescents in yet another country. After a team of researchers translated the programme known as Botvin LifeSkills Training into Italian, it was launched in around 180 schools in Lombardy, a region of Northern Italy. Within those schools the programme reached approximately 30,000 students and involved 1,800 teachers. The programme was found to reduce teenage smoking rates by 40% while boosting students’ self-esteem and equipping them with the relevant skills to deal with stressful situations. Following the success of the programme in Northern Italy, the Regional Observatory on Drug Addiction of Lombardy would like to see the programme implemented in schools across the country.

Links:

via Another success story: Italy adapts Botvin LifeSkills Training | Prevention Hub.


A Guide to Federal Education Programs That Can Fund K-12 Universal Prevention and Social and Emotional Learning

June 17, 2014

The Center on Education Policy and the Center for Health and Health Care in Schools created this user-friendly guide that highlights 15 federal elementary and secondary education programs where the statutory language or the regulations/guidance that accompanies a program appear to permit funds to be used to support universal prevention programs and social and emotional learning initiatives. The guide also provides examples of schools, districts, and state education agencies that have successfully supported their prevention programs with federal education dollars.  You can access the guide here:  http://www.cep-dc.org/displayDocument.cfm?DocumentID=437


LifeSkills Training Prevention Program Cuts Teen Smoking Rates in Italy

June 10, 2014

Results from a new multi-year initiative provide further evidence that a school prevention program called Botvin LifeSkills Training (LST) can dramatically cut teen cigarette smoking. After identifying LST as the top-rated prevention program, researchers in Italy translated the LST program into Italian and adapted it for Italian youth. Preliminary data show that the LST program cut the rate of cigarette smoking by 40% among participating Italian youth compared to those who did not receive the program. The results were presented at the 22nd Annual Meeting of the Society for Prevention Research on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Previous research with LST shows that it prevents tobacco, alcohol, illicit drugs, violence, and delinquency.

Dr. Gilbert J. Botvin, developer of the LST program, and Dr. Veronica Velasco, a psychologist and researcher at The Regional Observatory on Drug Addiction (OReD) of Lombardy, Italy (who participated via video) reported that LST also increased drug refusal skills and anti-drug attitudes compared to controls, and increased adaptive coping skills, interpersonal skills, and sense of well-being among participating students (ages 11-14). 

Read more…

via LifeSkills Training: Press Releases.


An explosion of youth exposure to e-cigarette TV ads

June 9, 2014

As the federal government moves to set rules that would ban the sale of electronic cigarettes to minors, a new study shows that TV ads for the products have increased dramatically during programs most likely to be watched by adolescents and young adults.

According to the study published online today by the journal Pediatrics, between 2011 and 2013 exposure to e-cigarette TV ads increased by 256% among adolescents ages 12 to 17 and by 321% among young adults, ages 18 to 24.

via An \’explosion\’ of youth exposure to e-cigarette TV ads.


Apply for a $2k Mini-Grant to Combat Tobacco Use

June 2, 2014

Schools and Community Youth Groups: Apply before June 30 at YStreet.org for a $2,000 grant to sponsor a Y Street group!

Y Street is the Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth’s award-winning teen volunteer initiative for high school students. The Y Street Grant program was launched in 2008 to recruit youth throughout Virginia to work on health related projects within their communities. Grant recipients receive up to $2,000 while simultaneously tackling important issues related to tobacco and childhood obesity. School-based and community-based organizations located in Virginia that work with high school teens are encouraged to apply to become part of this statewide movement.

http://www.ystreet.org/grants.php


The FY 2014 National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention Expansion Project solicitation has been released

May 29, 2014

The FY 2014 National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention Expansion Project solicitation has been released.

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Office of Justice Programs (OJP), Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention is seeking applications for the Fiscal Year (FY) 2014 National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention Expansion Project. This initiative furthers DOJ’s mission by combating youth violence through a comprehensive approach to prevention, intervention, suppression, and reentry.

Lead applicants may partner with a collaborative body that includes representation from city/county leadership, law enforcement, public health, courts, workforce development, housing and urban development, educators, and faith and community members. Partners should collectively have expertise in prevention, intervention, enforcement, and reentry.

The application deadline is June 23rd. For information about the Expansion Project please go to: http://www.ojjdp.gov/grants/solicitations/FY2014/Forum.pdf

Grants.gov number assigned to this announcement: OJJDP-2014-3900


Are your students prepared for the real world once they graduate?

May 27, 2014

Register for today’s webinar to learn more:

Preparing Students for Success after Graduation with Botvin LST Transitions

Webinar: Are you looking for a program that can teach students skills for success as they transition from high school to the workplace or college? Join us to learn how the Botvin LifeSkills Training Transitions program can help your students as they move from older adolescence into young adulthood. This program is a dynamic, skill-building prevention program specifically designed to bolster their thriving in new environments.

Transitions-for-wwwIn this informative presentation, participants will explore critical skill development for older adolescents. Learn about: the essential skills taught in the LST Transitions program, fidelity and implementation options, and how this program can prepare students for the future.

Duration: 30 minutes

Presenter: Craig Zettle has presented at national and international conferences over the last 15 years. He has been active in prevention education with the Botvin LifeSkills Training program for the last 10 years and regularly consults with schools, districts, federal and state agencies, as well as community-based organizations on the implementation and support of the LifeSkills Training program.

Register: Tuesday, May 27th 4pm ET: http://tinyurl.com/q4fvezm


Have a safe and healthy Memorial Day

May 26, 2014

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Students in Italy Learn Valuable Life Skills from America’s Top Prevention Program

May 16, 2014

WHITE PLAINS, NY – Countries around the world continue to grapple with the problem of teenage drug abuse. In their search for effective prevention programs, more and more countries are turning to programs proven to work in America. Such is the case in Italy, where health professionals and educators have turned to the Botvin LifeSkills Training (LST) program, extensively tested and widely regarded as America’s top prevention program for children and adolescents.

Pictured left to right: Dr. Kenneth Griffin, Dr. Christopher Williams, Dr. Veronica Velasco, Dr. Gilbert J. BotvinIn the Mediterranean culture, young people start drinking at a much earlier age than in other regions. A recent survey showed that drinking and drug use in Italy increases between ages 13 and 15 years old. To combat that, researchers in Italy have adapted, translated and implemented the LST program first in Milan and more recently in schools throughout the Lombardy region of Italy. Through the LST program, students not only learn how to resist pressures to smoke cigarettes, drink alcohol, and use illicit drugs. They also learn important life skills such as problem-solving, how to manage stress and anxiety, and how to communicate clearly. The combination of drug resistance skills and life skills has proven to be a powerful formula for preventing drug use. Studies in the US show that LST can cut rates of drug use in half, and in some cases by as much as 80% compared to teens not receiving LST.   

The Regional Observatory on Drug Addiction (OReD) of Lombardy, Italy, is spearheading this project. Ultimately, they hope to see that all students in the country receive the LST program. The OReD of Lombardy, under the auspices of Eupolis Lombardia and in association with the Regional Network on Addiction Prevention, supports different prevention programs throughout the schools in its region.

Dr. Veronica Velasco, a psychologist and researcher at ORed, is the manager of the LST project in Lombardy under the direction of Mr. Corrado Celata. She recently met with LST developer, Dr. Gilbert J. Botvin, and reported on the adaptation of the program and its dissemination in Italy.  

We chose LST because it was clearly the highest quality program available,” said Dr. Velasco.  “It was also very important to us that LST is evidence-based, and fits all 16 NIDA (National Institute on Drug Abuse) principles of prevention.”

“We are thrilled that more than 1,600 teachers and 20,000 students are participating in one of the first region-wide health projects ever delivered in Italy,” said Dr. Gilbert J. Botvin, program developer and professor emeritus at Cornell University’s Weill Medical College. “Dr. Velasco is leading a highly dedicated team of health professionals and educators in the implementation of LST in Italy, and we are delighted to hear of its success there.”

The project started in Milan, the capital of the Lombardy region, and then expanded to the rest of Lombardy. Lombardy is a very densely populated area (10 million people) with 15 health communities and 150 schools. Dr. Velasco and Dr. Botvin will present the details of this project at the annual meeting of the Society for Prevention Research on May 30, 2014 in Washington DC.

via LifeSkills Training: Press Releases.


Funding Opportunity- Minority Youth Violence Prevention: Integrating Public Health and Community Policing Approaches

May 14, 2014

Minority Youth Violence Prevention (MYVP) will support program interventions developed through adaptations, refinements, and modifications of promising violence prevention and crime reduction models that are tailored to at-risk minority male youth (10-18 years old) and integrate a problem solving approach. These approaches should simultaneously address public health and public safety concerns and be tailored to at-risk minority male youth. Applicants should demonstrate a partnership among disciplines, and include public health, law enforcement, and other criminal justice/public safety stakeholders, and organizations that specifically provide minority youth violence prevention services (e.g. community policing programs, juvenile services and the courts. Applicants must identify an established or promising violence prevention/crime reduction model and integrate the CDC public health or the SARA model to address the specific problem(s)identified among at-risk minority male youth in the target community.

Funder: Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health

Eligibility:  • State and local governments or their Bona Fide Agents • Local public health agencies (county and municipal) • State, local and tribal law enforcement agencies • Nonprofit with 501(c)(3) IRS status (other than institution of higher education) • Nonprofit without 501(c)(3) IRS status (other than institution of higher education) • For-profit organizations (other than small business) For profit organizations must agree to forgo any profit or management fee. • Small, minority, and women-owned business • Universities • Colleges • Research institutions • Hospitals • Community-based organizations • Faith-based organizations • Federally recognized or state-recognized American Indian/Alaska Native tribal governmengt • American Indian/Alaska Native tribally designated organizations • Alaska Native health organizations • Urban Indian health organizations • Tribal epidemiology centers.

Amount: $300,000 – $400,000.

Contact: Link.

Deadline: June 20, 2014


Funding Opportunity: Youth Empowerment Program II: (YEP II)

May 13, 2014

The YEP II focuses on the risk behaviors of at-risk minority male youth at critical stages in their lives, and improving long-term outcomes to increase the quality of their lives. Projects should address one or more of the following focus areas:1) minority male youth violence (including gang violence);2) teen pregnancy prevention education as it relates to males;3) career preparation training that is appropriate for at-risk minority male youth; and 4) mentoring support services (education and/or college preparation).

Funder: Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health

Eligibility: •Nonprofit with 501(c)(3) IRS status (other than institution of higher education) •Nonprofit without 501(c)(3) IRS status (other than institution of higher education) •For-profit organizations (other than small business) •Small, minority, and women-owned business •Universities •Colleges •Research institutions • Hospitals • Community-based organizations •Faith-based organizations •Federally recognized or state-recognized American Indian/Alaska Native tribal governments • American Indian/Alaska Native tribally designated organizations •Alaska Native health organizations •Urban Indian health organizations •Tribal epidemiology centers •State and local governments or their Bona Fide Agents •Political subdivisions of states.

Amount: $250,000 – $500,000.

Contact: Link.

Deadline: June 13, 2014

 


US Department of Education, School Climate Transformation Grants

May 9, 2014

US Department of Education, School Climate Transformation Grant—Local Educational Grants, “Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards for Fiscal Year 2014″ Released

 

The School Climate Transformation Grant—Local Educational Agency Grants program provides competitive grants to local educational agencies (LEAs) to develop, enhance, or expand systems of support for, and technical assistance to, schools implementing an evidence-based multi-tiered behavioral framework for improving behavioral outcomes and learning conditions for all students.

 

Eligible Applicants:  LEAs, or consortia of LEAs.

 

Application Deadline Date:  June 23, 2014

 

Estimated Available Funds:  $23,625,000

 

More detailed information is available online at: http://www2.ed.gov/programs/schoolclimatelea

 

US Department of Education, School Climate Transformation Grant—State Educational Agency Grants, “Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards for Fiscal Year 2014″ Released

 

The School Climate Transformation Grant—State Educational Agency Grants program provides competitive grants to State educational agencies (SEAs) to develop, enhance, or expand statewide systems of support for, and technical assistance to, local educational agencies and schools implementing an evidence-based, multi-tiered behavioral framework for improving behavioral outcomes and learning conditions for all students.

 

Eligible Applicants:  SEAs

 

Application Deadline Date:  June 23, 2014

 

Estimated Available Funds:  $7,375,000

 

More detailed information is available online at: http://www2.ed.gov/programs/schoolclimatesea


Botvin LifeSkills Training: Prevention Newsletter

May 7, 2014

Our 2014 Spring Newsletter is now online. Check it out to learn more about prevention tips, funding, training.

via Botvin LifeSkills Training: Prevention Newsletter.


The need for prevention is now; Unleashing the Power of Prevention

July 8, 2015

Originally posted on Botvin LifeSkills Training:

Every day across America, behavioral health problems in childhood and adolescence take a heavy toll on millions of lives. These problems range from anxiety, depression and mental health problems, to poor eating habits and weight problems, to substance abuse, delinquency and violence. For decades the approach to these problems has been to treat them only after they’ve been identified—at a high and ongoing cost to young people, families, communities, and the entire nation. Now we have a 30-year body of research and more than 50 programs showing that behavioral health problems can be prevented.

LifeSkills Training is one such program. LST is a school-based prevention program designed to prevent behavioral health problems by promoting personal coping skills, general social skills, and information and attitudes related to specific health problems, and overall resilience. LST has been extensively tested and proven effective, with evidence of its effectiveness documented in over 32…

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Breakthrough in Preventing Teen Drug Abuse

June 26, 2015

A recently published study sheds new light on how to prevent teen drug abuse. It also provides new evidence that the conventional wisdom regarding the timing of prevention efforts may be wrong.  The current study shows that, with the right program, it’s possible to cut high school drug abuse in half.

The results of this study are especially important because they challenge the prevailing wisdom that high school is too late a time to start prevention programs. This program offers a successful approach to helping teens not exposed to an effective prevention program at an earlier age.

The new study, published in the World Journal of Preventive Medicine, shows that an approach proven effective with elementary and middle school students also works with high school students. The study compared students attending schools assigned at random to either receive or not receive the Botvin LifeSkills Training (LST) high school program, which was adapted from the evidence-based LST Middle School program. The LST program prevents tobacco, alcohol, and illicit drug use by teaching students skills for coping with the challenges of life, reducing motivations to use drugs and engaging in unhealthy behaviors, and fostering overall resilience.

Researchers found that the LST high school program reduced drug abuse in teens. Compared to the non-LST control group, there were 52% fewer daily substance users in the LST group.  The study shows that dramatic reductions in drug abuse are possible with high school students across different racial/ethnic groups and different parts of the country.

“These are very exciting findings. This study not only shows that it’s possible to cut drug abuse in half among high school students. It also shows that you can do so with a program delivered by classroom teachers who only need minimal specialized training. Since this kind of program is inexpensive and can be widely disseminated to schools across the country, it offers tremendous potential as a cost-effective approach to a major public health problem,” said Dr. Gilbert J. Botvin, developer of the LifeSkills Training program and professor emeritus of Cornell University’s Weill Medical College.

The LifeSkills Training high school program is a highly interactive curriculum that teaches students skills that have been found to prevent substance use and violence. Rather than merely teaching information about the dangers of drug abuse, the LST program promotes healthy alternatives to risky behavior. Throughout the program, students develop strategies for making healthy decisions, reducing stress, and managing anger, as well as strengthening their communication skills and learning how to build healthy relationships. The program also helps students understand the consequences of substance use, risk-taking, and the influences of the media.

Contact:

Paulina Kalaj

Director, Communications & Media Relations

800-293-4969

pkalaj@nhpamail.com


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