The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration has awarded the Greater Lawrence Family Health Center on behalf of Medford Health Matters, The Sobering Truth on Preventing Underage Drinking Act Grant (STOP ACT). The funding will run from October 2012 through September 2016.
Over the past eight years Medford Health Matters and Medford’s Board of Health have partnered with the Greater Lawrence Family Health Center, Inc. to implement a federal Drug Free Communities Grant (DFC).
“The DFC program’s focus is to address youth substance use, understanding that key stakeholders and local citizens are essential to solving local problems. The coalition works with multiple sectors to change or influence community standards, structures and attitudes with respect to alcohol, tobacco and other drugs through information, education and initiatives related to substance abuse prevention. This grant will afford our police department resources needed to advance the existing efforts,” said to Karen Rose, Director of Public Health and Elder Affairs.
The STOP Act grant will enhance current DFC program efforts with a primary focus of working with the Medford Police Department to ensure best practices in training and enforcement procedures.
“Our department is proud to be contracting with Medford Health Matters around these issues and values the public health approach to prevent and reduce youth substance use. Public health looks to impact the larger population through health and safety of evidence based practices and we will shift our efforts to support healthy and thriving young people,” said Chief Leo Sacco.
There are many projects that the Medford’s Board of Health has been focusing on that have been granted to the City of Medford.
“This project is adding to current efforts that are building on creating activities for teens in Medford, the new efforts will be assessing ways to mitigate youth substance use in our community,” said Mayor McGlynn.
Prevention efforts in the city have been branded as Team Medford. Team Medford currently works on a Underage Drinking Prevention Grant from the Bureau of Substance Abuse Services, DFC grant, STOP ACT grant, and Mass in Motion from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health whose efforts are to systematically create a healthier Medford.
The coalition will begin work immediately. If you would like to be involved in the process of implementing the STOP Act grant or other projects your participation will be invaluable to the community.
Please contact TeamMedford02155@gmail.com for further information.
- Submitted by Brooke Hoyt, Drug Free Communities Coordinator