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.

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:

Contact: Paulina Kalaj 800-293-4969

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.

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.

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

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 and the SAMHSA website to download the required documents you will need to apply for this SAMHSA grant.

Applicants must apply online through 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 Kameisha Bennett can also be contacted on program issues at (240)-276-2586 or

For questions on grants management and budget issues please contact Eileen Bermudez at (240) 276-1412 or

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

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.


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

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.


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