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(Phoenix, October 30, 2017) The Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) has awarded Southwest Behavioral & Health Services’ South Mountain WORKS Coalition one of 719 national grants as part of its Drug-Free Communities (DFC) program.

The $89 million in DFC Support Program grants are given to local drug prevention coalitions to fund prevention programs aimed at youth substance use, including prescription drugs, marijuana, tobacco, and alcohol. This is the largest number of single-year grantees since the program’s founding.

The DFC Program, created by the Drug-Free Communities Act of 1997, is the Nation’s leading effort to mobilize communities to prevent youth drug use. Grounded in the philosophy that local problems need local solutions, the DFC Program is designed to support communities as they mobilize individuals and organizations to reduce youth substance use.

The mission of the South Mountain WORKS (Working to build Opportunities, Resources, Knowledge and Skills) Coalition is to educate, equip and empower community members in the South Mountain area of Phoenix to create a healthy and drug-free future for children, youth and families.

“Receiving this grant is the result of the hard work and dedication of the South Mountain WORKS Coalition and its members,” said Carrie Monica, MSW, LCSW, Program Director/Community Services at Southwest Behavioral & Health Services. “This funding will have a tremendous impact on the Coalition’s mission and vision of reducing youth substance use in South Mountain.”

In addition, Shomari Jackson has been selected as the Drug-Free Communities Grant Project Coordinator for the South Mountain WORKS Coalition. Jackson started his career with Southwest Behavioral & Health Services in 2013 as a Prevention Specialist for the South Mountain WORKS Coalition. As a prevention specialist, he was responsible for leading afterschool Youth Leadership programs, delivering Life Skills classroom based substance abuse prevention curriculum, and supporting the Youth Subcommittee in delivering youth driven coalition activities and events. He has been instrumental and at the forefront of meaningfully engaging and retaining South Mountain youth in the efforts of the coalition.

Jackson will be responsible for supporting the coalition and its leadership in meeting the deliverables and efforts of the Drug-Free Communities grant.

In addition, Shana Malone from Compass Evaluation will serve as the evaluator for the DFC grant and will be working with Coalition staff as a consultant.

“I am extremely honored to continue my support of the coalition during such a pivotal moment in time,” said Shomari Jackson, prevention specialist. Our work with the youth and community of South Mountain has set the stage for the passion and commitment to creating positive change in South Mountain. I’m looking forward to working with our teams to continue the work that began so many years ago.”

About Southwest Behavioral & Health Services:

Incorporated in 1974 as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, Southwest Behavioral & Health Services provides services in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area, rural Maricopa County, Gila, Mohave, Coconino, and Yavapai counties. Our Mission: “We inspire people to feel better and reach their potential. Through helping people discover their strengths, we improve our communities.” SB&H is a leader in development and delivery of services in the areas of housing, residential care, prevention services, outpatient services to children, incarcerated persons and dually diagnosed adults (SMI/SA). An innovative leader in behavioral health, services are client directed-outcome informed, evidence-based and include treatment of co-occurring disorders, the FAST model in prevention services, the Arizona Treatment Initiative for children and families, and the Recovery Model for persons with serious mental illness. For more information on SB&H, please visit www.sbhservices.org; www.saceaz.org.

 

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