Coalition Blog

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Ongoing News and Information from the Wellspring Center for Prevention Coalition
SEP
22
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Recovery Support Services Needed in Middlesex County

Recovery Support Services Needed in Middlesex County
The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence – New Jersey put on a phenomenal and educational event to kick-off the beginning of September as National Addiction Recovery Month with a forum examining supports that help stabilize the lives of people who are in recovery from alcohol or other drug problems. National Addiction Recovery Month focuses on the 23 million Americans who are in recovery from addiction and as a result, lead rich, fulfilling lives. Recovery support services which are vital in preventing relapse, and thus stemming the tides of addiction, include job training and referrals, education, housing, resume writing, computer skills, as well as fostering a supportive environment. These services are often the missing piece in rehabilitation. The event was on Tuesday September 1st at the Middlesex County Fire Academy in Sayreville, New Jersey and was attended by approximately 100 people. There were ten exhibitor tables, all highlighting work already...
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1676 Hits
SEP
03
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Time To Clean Up

Time To Clean Up
If your medicine cabinet has drugs that are expired or no longer needed, it’s time to clean up. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is sponsoring the 10th annual National Prescription Drug Take Back event on Saturday September 26, 2015 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Municipalities across the nation will provide their residents with another opportunity to prevent prescription and over-the-counter drug abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted drugs. Residents are urged to clean out their medicine cabinets and bring their medications for disposal to sites available in their own or nearby municipality. Collection sites in every local community can be found by going to www.dea.gov . This site will be continuously updated with new take-back locations. The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked. Here are some of the reason this event is held annually: Every day, about 2500 teens take...
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1930 Hits
SEP
01
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LETTER: Drinking while pregnant risks health of child

LETTER: Drinking while pregnant risks health of child
By :Barbara May, Chair, N.J. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Task Force Sept. 9 is Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Awareness Day, created to increase our recognition of the risks associated with drinking alcohol during pregnancy. Just one drink of alcohol during pregnancy places the baby at risk of FASD. FASD is a group of conditions that can include physical disabilities, as well as difficulties with behavior and learning. These various conditions are lifelong and irreversible, and can affect a person in different ways, ranging from mild to severe. There is no known type, or amount, of alcohol that is safe to drink at any time during pregnancy. The good news is that FASD is completely preventable. Avoiding alcohol ensures against FASD. We all can raise awareness by sharing the risks associated with FASD with the women in our lives who are of childbearing age. Since pregnancies are sometimes unplanned, it is...
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1687 Hits
AUG
20
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An Outbreak of Opioids

An Outbreak of Opioids
By Chynelle Menezes Heroin use and addiction have long been a national crisis, but now it’s at your doorstep. Heroin overdose is a far greater cause of death than homicide, suicide, car accidents, and AIDS in New Jersey. In 2013, the country faced 2.6 heroin-related deaths per 100,000 people, but New Jersey faced 8.3 deaths per 100,000 people – over triple the national average. Just last year there were almost 800 heroin-related deaths in New Jersey. The problem may be attributed to increased prescription drug use and abuse in New Jersey. Opiate/opioid painkillers are turning out to be the gateway drug to heroin, with prescription drug users being 40 times more likely to use heroin. Right now, heroin is at its purest (though often laced with other dangerous substances, like fentanyl) and five or six times cheaper than prescription drugs. Heroin use has increased among every demographic group, even people historically...
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1699 Hits
JUL
17
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13th Annual Middlesex County Prevention Education Summit

13th Annual Middlesex County Prevention Education Summit
Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE More than 120 professionals from multiple disciplines recently attended the 13th Annual Middlesex County Prevention Education Summit at the Middlesex County Fire Academy in Sayreville.  “Addressing the Prescription Drug & Heroin Problem” was the focus of the 2015 event that was sponsored by the Attorney General’s Office, the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office, NCADD of Middlesex County, and Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. Keynote speaker Freeholder H. James Polos addressed the audience with passion, reporting the steps Middlesex County has taken to get ahead of this rapidly growing epidemic.   He challenged those in attendance to get involved and help to educate the public from all sectors. Four educational workshops followed on related topics.  Special Agent Timothy McMahon of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) presented the first workshop, “Scope of the Problem”.  Agent McMahon provided an overview of the progression from prescription drug abuse to...
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JUN
09
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One Phone Call. One Life Saved.

One Phone Call. One Life Saved.
Communities in Middlesex County are adopting the Coalition’s “One Phone Call, One Life Saved” campaign to educate the public about the life-saving laws that exist in New Jersey.  The South Brunswick Municipal Alliance has recently incorporate the message on two billboards in the township, encouraging individuals who witness an alcohol or drug overdose to call 911. It is critical that the public, especially teens, know that alcohol poisoning and drug overdoses are serious medical emergencies  and should be treated as such.  This is not the time to hesitate to call for help for fear of getting in trouble. Young people are exempt from prosecution if they call 911 for help, stay with the victim, and provide required information to the authorities responding to the incident.  However, this law will only save lives if young people know it exists. How do you recognize alcohol poisoning? The common symptoms are mental confusion, inability...
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MAY
08
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Coalition member Families Against Addiction offers special drug awareness program in Old Bridge

Coalition member Families Against Addiction offers special drug awareness program in Old Bridge
Join us May 26, 2015 from 7 to 9 pm at the Old Bridge Library (located at 1 Old Bridge Plaza in Old Bridge) for a special presentation by Steered Straight . Steered Straight is committed to providing real-life, motivational messages about substance use and abuse, gang involvement, and bullying. Essentially, the Steered Straight message is simple: The choices we make have a profound impact on the rest of our lives. For better or worse, every decision has a consequence. Steered Straight's presenters are ex-offenders who all deliver a positive and powerful message of taking responsibility for both choices made and the eventual consequences of those choices. Kids walk away with a message they will never forget:"You Get Out of Life No More Than and No Less Than, What You Put Into It".  
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2085 Hits
APR
13
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National Prevention Week - May 17 - 23, 2015

National Prevention Week - May 17 - 23, 2015
National Prevention Week is an annual health observance dedicated to increasing public awareness of substance abuse and mental health issues. Sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the campaign brings individuals, organizations, coalitions, and communities together to educate the public about the importance of preventing substance abuse and mental disorders before they occur. National Prevention Week takes place May 17-23, 2015.  Near the start of summer, this is an ideal time for communities to come together and rally around prevention.  Summer is a season filled with celebrations and recreational activities where substance use and abuse can happen, such as graduation parties, proms, weddings, sporting events, and outdoor activities. National Prevention Week is timed to allow schools to take part in a prevention-themed event before the school year ends, raising awareness in students of all ages. The percentages of marijuana, cigarette, and alcohol initiates among youth increase between...
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1788 Hits
DEC
23
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Big Changes for the Coalition in 2014

Big Changes for the Coalition in 2014
The Coalition for Healthy Communities seeks to reduce substance abuse, especially among youth, by working to develop, implement and promote environmental strategies and coordinating and sharing resources to maximize the quality and availability of services to communities in Middlesex County. To do this work effectively, the coalition has several Task Forces in place that are focused on specific priorities of the coalition, such as underage drinking, prescription drug abuse and youth issues.   Members had the option of joining one of these Task Forces in addition to being a general member. Starting this year, we took the Task Force idea to a new and more productive level. Not only did we revamp existing Task Forces and add two new ones, but we made them the core of the Coalition. Members join a Task Force of their interest and through that process become members of the larger coalition, resulting in more active participation....
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1742 Hits
OCT
25
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4th Annual Creative Expression Contest Winners Announced

4th Annual Creative Expression Contest Winners Announced
The Coalition for Healthy Communities announced the winners of the fourth annual "Be Smart About Medicine" Creative Expression Contest at a special awards dinner held on January 8, 2014 at Middlesex County College. To help promote awareness about prescription and over-the-counter drug abuse among middle school students and encourage them to "Be Smart" about prescription and over-the-counter drugs, the Coalition for Healthy Communities invited students in grades six through eight from across Middlesex County to submit an entry to the fourth annual "Be Smart About Medicine" Creative Expression Contest. Prizes were awarded for first, second, and third place winners in each grade (6-8), with a $100 gift card presented to the first place winner, $50 card for second place, and $25 for third place. Winners included: 6th grade: • 1st place - Mateo Aguilar of Lincoln Middle School • 2nd place - Irene Perez of Lincoln Middle School • 3rd place...
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1840 Hits

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