October is National Substance Abuse Awareness Month

SAP-MonthOctober is National Substance Abuse Prevention Month, a great opportunity to focus on equipping our youth and empowering them to navigate one of the greatest high-risk challenges they face.

Education on the risks and dangers of drugs is an important part of the equation, however, for more of a wrap-around strategy we need to help encourage our youth to internalize positive core character values, learn and practice healthy coping skills, and develop a positive attitude & mindset for building resiliency to overcome their challenges and stay on course.

ICAN has been giving youth the opportunity to internalize healthy/positive choices, coping skills and resiliency for quite some time, and, the outcomes are evidenced in the results provided by their youth surveys from “ICAN’s FY2017 Program Evaluation Report.”  Here are a few of their comments:

  • 90% of the youth reported they “Make better Decisions”,
  • 92% say “no” to things they know are wrong
  • 90% stay away from drugs and alcohol
  • 88% do better in school
  • 83% have control over things that happen to them
  • 82% feel better at handling whatever comes my way
  • 85% feel better about my future
  • 80% spend more time looking for opportunities to help others in their community.

Ted at Chandler HighThe Chandler Coalition on Youth Substance Abuse (CCYSA) and the Chandler Gilbert Substance Use & Treatment Task Force taught these concepts in various elementary, Jr & Sr. High schools through presentations containing education on the risks and dangers of drugs & choices, coping and resiliency, reaching over 1,000 students in the 2016-17 school year.  This 2017-18 school year we expect to be able to reach 4,000 – 5,000 students.

We encourage families to be intentional with integrating these concepts into everyday home life. For more tips and resources , if you are interested in booking a presentation, or, want to attend or schedule a community presentation, you can do that through the www.ccysachandler.org or contact Ted Huntington at ted@icanaz.org.


Ted Huntington
Community Programs Manager, ICAN/CCYSA