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Centerstone Expands Substance Use Prevention Program

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Centerstone, a nonprofit health system specializing in mental health and substance use disorder treatments, is expanding its Substance Use Prevention program in Southern Illinois. The program has expanded to include 4th and 5th grade students in Jackson and Williamson counties. Previously, Centerstone’s Substance Use Prevention program worked with students in the 7th through 10th grades in the counties. The program provides alcohol, tobacco, and other drug prevention services. “While they have experienced success in the program with 7-10th graders, research has shown that children are experimenting with substances at earlier ages. They state that they want to teach prevention as early as possible to abate this.

The goal of the 4-5th grade component of the Substance Use Prevention program is to promote positive relationships and build communication, problem solving and resistance skills through youth prevention education.

Using lessons tailored to each student, Centerstone’s SUP team will use interactive activities to help students learn and apply the strategies and skills needed to prevent substance use.

Skills taught in the program include:

  • Goal setting
  • Making responsible decisions
  • Bonding with others
  • Identifying and managing emotions
  • Effective communication techniques
  • Managing mistakes and disappointment
  • Resisting peer pressure
  • Understanding peer influence
  • Making healthy choices

Centerstone’s SUP is funded in whole or in part by the Illinois Department of Human Services, Division of Substance Use Prevention and Recovery through a grant from Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services SAMHSA Administration.

Leah Lerner is a media writer, producer, and announcer at WSIU Public Broadcasting located at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. Contact WSIU Radio at 618-453-6101 or email wsiunews@wsiu.org.
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