The 5th annual Substance Abuse Prevention Conference hosted by ACT Missouri was held November 18-19th at Lodge of the Four Seasons at Lake of the Ozarks. Participants were able to attend a variety of breakouts and network with other coalition members from across Missouri.. Scott Collier of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration spoke on the new changes with the National Rx Drug Take-Back Initiative, and Missouri Representative Holly Rehder closed the conference out with a keynote on the importance of a Prescription Drug Monitoring Program in Missouri.
“The Prevention Conference is a time for preventionists from across Missouri to come together to learn and network,” says Chuck Daugherty, Executive Director of ACT Missouri. “We are lucky to have so many local experts who are willing to share their expertise with our communities.”
A highlight of the Conference is awarding the Champion for Change of Prevention, Milestone Award, and Coalition of the Year award. Nina Carter received the Champion for Change of Prevention award. This award is given to someone who supports community efforts to address substance abuse prevention, increase education and outreach, and integrate primary and behavioral health. Nina has increased the capacity of the CHART coalition in Douglas County from 13 members to over 33 members and while including all sectors of the community wheel. She engages youth to become part of the coalition and makes them feel part of the decision making of the group. Her team minded spirit continues to drive the coalition along with her humble attitude, and work ethic. She empowers the coalition to grow and gives consistent reminders that the coalition is part of bigger picture of prevention and they are all part of a cultural shift.
The McDonald County Coalition received the 2014 Milestone Award. The Milestone Award celebrates a coalition’s specific success in FY2014 in the area of outreach, advocacy, media, education, or training. The McDonald County Coalition has only been an organized effort for 21 months and continue to impress with their motivation and willingness to learn the strategic prevention framework, set attainable goals, and work to implement and evaluate programs for the betterment of their community. They want to create positive change the right way. This Coalition has buy-in from all the community sectors and they have realized the impact they can make collectively. They will continue to do great things in the area of substance abuse and violence prevention for years to come.
The Coalition of the Year awards celebrates a coalition’s sustained level of excellence. Lee’s Summit CARES has been one of the model prevention coalitions in the state of Missouri for over 25 years. Their dedication and motivation to reduce underage drug use has greatly benefited neighborhoods throughout the city of Lee’s Summit. Leadership has continued to be top quality in bringing together the community sectors that assist with prevention efforts. The Lee’s Summit CARES vision and mission ensure that Lee’s Summit is informed and educated about the dangers and consequences of alcohol and other drug among the youth in the community is what continues to drive this coalition to reach its goals.
ACT Missouri is the statewide training and resource center for substance abuse prevention. Its mission is to be the statewide prevention catalyst, empowering individuals and fostering partnerships to promote safe, healthy, and drug-free communities.
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