Parent Alert | July 2023 | What is a Coalition?

What is a Coalition?

Coalitions are organizations made up of two or more people or groups who are working together towards a common goal. Community coalitions focus their prevention efforts on a wide variety of problems, but we are going to focus on the work that Wayne County Coalitions (WCC) are doing to prevent youth substance use and Substance Use Disorders (SUDs). There are currently three active community coalitions in Wayne County:

These coalitions have been working to change communities for many years. They are made up of business owners, government officials, school officials, law enforcement, community members, and students. Our coalitions also partner with other local organizations such as the YMCA, Goodwill, and libraries. Collaboration is the key to a successful coalition and its prevention efforts. Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA) developed seven strategies to affect community change which are utilized by WCC to accomplish their goals. These strategies are:

  • Providing Information
  • Enhancing Skills
  • Providing Support
  • Enhancing Access/Reducing Barriers
  • Changing Consequences (Incentives/Disincentives)
  • Changing Physical Design
  • Modifying/Changing Policy

Some examples of how our coalitions have used these strategies include:

  • Billboard campaigns educated the community about the dangers of substances
  • Alcohol vendor trainings for businesses to learn how to responsibly sell and serve alcohol
  • Substance free community events
  • Giving convenience stores No Sale Under 21 stickers

These examples are just some of the ways our coalitions impact the community. If you are interested in finding out more about our coalitions please visit our coalition websites highlighted in this article. If you are interested in joining one of our coalitions then please send an e-mail to CoalitionsCommunication@gmail.com, or contact the coalition staff support team:

  • Community Coalitions Manager, Kristina Hoskins - hoskinsk@one-eighty.org, 330-804-5841
  • Coalition Prevention Specialist, Robert Bean -                beanr@one-eighty.org, 330-804-3122

Turning Point Coalition meets the second Friday of the month at 8:30 AM. The meeting are held in person at the Orrville Board of Education, or via Zoom. The meeting dates for the remainder of 2023 are:

  • August 11th
  • September 8th
  • October 13th
  • November 10th
  • December 8th
Resources

Turning Point Coalition
Wayne County Coalitions

ACEs and PACEs

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), "Adverse childhood experiences, or ACEs, are potentially traumatic events that occur in childhood (0-17 years)." ACEs have been tied to negative outcomes that impact an individual's physical and mental health, relationships with others, and overall quality of life. The poor health outcomes include increased risks of injury, sexually transmitted infections, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and suicide. The CDC reports that nearly two-thirds of U.S. adults reported experiencing at least one ACE before age 18, and 17% reported experiencing four or more types of ACEs. The more ACEs a person experiences correlates to the level of risk they face for negative outcomes. Some of the events that are considered ACEs include:

  • Experiencing violence, abuse, or neglect
  • Witnessing violence in the home or community
  • Food or housing instability
  • Growing up in a house with substance use problems, mental health problems, or instability due to parental separation or household members being in jail or prison

ACEs create toxic stress which damages children's developing brains. Stress is a natural response to challenging events or environments. Stress is typically brief, and presents symptoms such as increased heart rate, analytical thinking, and the release of cortisol and adrenaline. The toxic stress created by ACEs is created because those adverse experiences keep a child's body and mind in a constant state of fight or flight. Our bodies are not meant to handle these levels of stress which is why people who have experienced ACEs face increased risks of poor health outcomes. ACEs can cause a lot of damage in a person's life, but people can heal from these experiences and there are ways to prevent ACEs altogether.

Positive and adverse childhood experiences (PACEs) impact our lives, organizations, systems, and communities. Research into the relationship between these two competing influences has led to the development of programs to heal those who have experienced ACEs as well as evidence-based prevention practices. These programs and practices are used by schools, pediatricians, police departments, and community organizations to create trauma-informed responses and resilience-building practices for the people they serve. The CDC has identified six prevention strategies to address ACEs:

  • Strengthening economic supports to families
  • Promoting social norms that protect against violence and adversity
  • Ensuring a strong start for children
  • Teaching skills
  • Connecting youth to caring adults and activities
  • Intervening to lessen immediate and long-term harms

The study of ACEs and their relationship to an individual's life and outcomes began in 1995, and researchers have learned a lot about how childhood experiences impact adult outcomes. More research is being done, but the solid knowledge base that has been created from nearly thirty years of research has already helped create better outcomes for all children. Please check out the resources below for more information and resources about ACEs and PACEs.

Resources

July is BIPOC Mental Health Awareness Month

"The greatness of a community is most accurately measured by the compassionate actions of its members" - Coretta Scott King

The pandemic showed us the role that mental health can take on our overall health. Recognition regarding mental health has led to more research, better treatment plans, and conversations on how to deal with mental health issues. But there are still changes that need to be made so all individuals receive the best mental health care available. Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities face poorer mental health outcomes than other races due to a variety of factors including discrimination, lack of access to quality care, and stigma attached to mental health issues. In 2021, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services "estimated that only 39 percent of Black or African American adults, 25 percent of Asian adults, and 36 percent of Hispanic/Latino adults with any mental illness were treated, compared to 52 percent of non-Hispanic white adults."

July is known as BIPOC Mental Health Awareness Month, and is meant to bring awareness to these disparities as well as highlight the importance of culturally responsive mental health care. Mental Health America's (MHA) theme for BIPOC Mental Health Awareness Month 2023 is 'Culture, Community, and Connection'. MHA points out that "Our lives are deeply intertwined with our environments, and these surroundings impact our mental health and overall wellness."

Community plays an important role in our lives, and how your community treats you can impact your quality of life. BIPOC communities have had to form their own communities to find support due to the oppression and systemic racism they have faced. MHA is seeking to help educate people about the hurdles BIPOC communities have faced. They provided many resources to help communities grow and learn in regard to BIPOC mental health. The topics they cover include Connecting with CommunityCommunity Displacement and its Influence on Mental Health, and Improving Mental Health of BIPOC Communities Through Community Advocacy. Communities need to come together to ensure that their citizens experience the best life possible, and one way to do that is to start by recognizing how mental health impacts overall wellness especially among groups who experience disparities. Check out the resources below for more information, and to learn how you can help your community become a supportive place for everyone.

Resources
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Copyright © 2023 Turning Point Coalition. All rights reserved.

This publication is developed in part under grant number SP020543-09 from the Office of National Drug Control Policy and Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The views, policies, and opinions expressed are those of the Coalition and do not necessarily reflect those of ONDCP, SAMHSA, or HHS.

Our mailing address is:
Turning Point Coalition
c/o 104 Spink St.
Wooster, OH 44691

CoalitionsCommunication@gmail.com

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