Coalition of the Year: Riverhead Community Coalition for Safe and Drug-Free Youth
Riverhead Community Coalition for Safe and Drug-Free Youth was founded in 2006 in Riverhead, NY by Riverhead Community Awareness Program, Inc. (CAP). It serves the ethnically and economically diverse communities that comprise the Riverhead Central School District located on eastern Long Island, gateway to the affluent Hamptons communities on the South Fork and Long Island Wine Country on the North Fork. The coalition’s mission is to engage collaborative partners in the planning, implementation and evaluation of strategies that prevent youth substance use. This is the third consecutive Got Outcomes! award for the Riverhead Community Coalition, who won for short-term outcomes in 2017 and intermediate outcomes in 2018.
As 2019 Coalition of the Year, Riverhead demonstrated successes in reducing underage drinking, the leading substance abuse problem facing Riverhead youth. Through their expertise, energy and dedication to its mission, coalition members identified the following local conditions: youth accessing alcohol through retail outlets; youth accessing alcohol at fairs, festivals, and outdoor venues; youth drinking alcohol in homes and at parties with people over 21, especially around prom and graduation season; and youth drinking alcohol at local parks, beaches, and on back roads. Successful environmental strategies highlighted in their Got Outcomes! application included the establishment of alcohol compliance checks, Pre-Prom policies, responsible server training, and the town’s first comprehensive Alcohol Policy for public events. The coalition successfully engaged all 12 sectors of the community to implement these strategies. In particular, their partnerships with the Riverhead Police Department, Riverhead Central School District, Riverhead Youth Coalition, and the Town of Riverhead resulted in a 42% decrease in binge drinking and a 22% decrease in 30-day alcohol use among Riverhead High School students.
Coalition of Excellence: Drug Free Fayette
Drug Free Fayette is a community prevention coalition based in Fayette County, Georgia, a suburb of Atlanta. DFF was launched by Fayette FACTOR in 2015, although Fayette FACTOR and community partners already had some alcohol abuse prevention projects in the works before then. DFF has a coalition of 35 community members, comprised of alcohol, marijuana, prescription drug and youth action teams.
Coalition in Focus: Noble SWAT DFC
The Noble SWAT Drug Free Communities is a strategic partnership with the University of Oklahoma Southwest Prevention Center to build and strengthen community collaborations to prevent substance use in Cleveland County, Oklahoma. The coalition’s efforts focus on tobacco, alcohol and opioid use by youth in the community. Noble SWAT DFC empowers youth to positively impact the community by increasing awareness of substance use issues, addressing local conditions that seem to be driving the problem, and mobilizing the community to take action.