Youth-Led coalitions continue recruitment


By Martin Graham - mgraham@recordherald.com



The Fayette County Prevention Coalition is encouraging students to join their respective youth-led coalitions within the local school districts and attend their regular meetings each month.

The Fayette County Prevention Coalition created a unified community response to prevent youth substance abuse and support the development of effective community programs to promote a safer, healthier and drug-free Fayette County. One such program is the Youth-Led Coalitions, which formed in February of 2017 with a $1,000 grant.

“Youth are generally recruited by other youth, through word of mouth, traditional marketing approaches, as well as in-school announcements, school administrators, or other adults,” Kylena France B.A., M. Ed, CDCA, LPC Drug Free Communities Program Director with the Fayette County Community Action Commission, said. “We are currently recruiting youth for the 2018-2019 Youth-Led Coalitions and will be scheduling our in-school meetings beginning early in September at Miami Trace and Washington Court House City Schools. Positions available in the coalition include: chair, co-chair, secretary, and treasurer.”

The Youth-Led Coalition is currently funded by the Paint Valley ADAMH Board and local donations. The goals of the Youth-Led Coalition are to change community norms by getting youth talking about drug abuse, empower youth leaders to be positive role models, help them make healthy life choices and provide a space where they can feel connected, supported, and empowered to lead happy and healthy lives.

The Youth-Led Coalition targets youth in middle and high school who are part of the general population or may be at risk. Requirements for entry include a commitment to abstain from substance use, the ability to speak to peers about the dangers of substance use, a want for continued education about substances and the ability to work collaboratively with others to ensure that every adolescent is healthy, safe and successful.

“Youth-Led Coalition members are invited to attend the Fayette County Prevention Coalition meetings which occur the third Wednesday of the month at the Health Department Community Room at 8 a.m.,” France said. “Youth are motivated to become involved because of their desire to lead a substance free life, to help others and to develop their leadership skills. We believe when it comes to youth, the idea of ‘Nothing about us without us’ is so important, that’s why we strive to involve youth in all aspects of the planning and implementing of our prevention goals.”

If interested in joining the Youth-Led Coalition or the Fayette County Prevention Coalition, please call Kylena France at 740-335-7282 or email kfrance@cacfayettecounty.org. Organizers also encourage the community to like and follow the coalition on Facebook at Fayette County Prevention Coalition.

The information in this article was provided by Kylena France B.A., M. Ed, CDCA, LPC Drug Free Communities Program Director with the Fayette County Community Action Commission.

Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy.

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By Martin Graham

mgraham@recordherald.com