Earlier this month, a few of the TRUE BLUE Crew members met to learn the Chatter 4 Change podcasting process. The graduating seniors worked with younger students to provide a smooth transition for the new podcast crew. In addition to the podcast training, True Blue Crew members made Substance Prevention PSAs. Chatter 4 Change podcasts will return in late July after our crew enjoys a short summer break.
The past year has taught us that we can do successful prevention work even in times of a global pandemic. This year the Webster County KY-ASAP True Blue Coalition was unable to implement some of the traditional prevention programs, so the program committee went to work to alter the plans. Since the Mini TLC was cancelled due to the event being a large group activity, the ASAP board collaborated with the middle school to implement a Mini Mini TLC with Hello WCMS in small groups. The Mini Mini TLC was held at the football field and in the middle school gym where 6th grade students were able to participate in character building, decision making, and team building activities with the leadership of the YES Youth Council True Blue Crew and the Webster County Extension Staff. (One underlying objective in ALL the Webster County True Blue Crew’s activities is that younger students see the high school crew have an abundance amount of fun without using substances — and what a FUN day!)
Webster County KY-ASAP True Blue Coalition developed the Celebrate FREE campaign in 2019 to encourage youth and their families to enjoy their accomplishments substance-free. Prom, Senior Night, Graduation are milestone events that should be celebrated safely. Parents, monitor gatherings to assure your youth are free of unhealthy and illegal substances. The Webster County KY-ASAP True Blue Drug Free Communities program would like to remind adults that alcohol possession and/or consumption is illegal for anyone under the age of 21.
The 2021 Celebrate FREE campaign is sponsored by United Community Bank.
In Webster County, prescription medications may be taken to the following permanent locations:
Dixon Drug Store – Monday-Friday, 9:00-5:00
Clay Drug Store – Monday-Friday 9:00-5:00, Saturday, 9:00-12:00
Bell’s Drug Store (Sebree) – Monday-Friday 9:00-5:00
Thrifty Pharmacy (Providence) – Monday-Friday 8:30-5:30, Saturday 8:30-12:00
Providence Police Department – Monday-Friday, 9:00-5:00
Webster County Sheriff’s Department
Don’t let others misuse unused prescription medications from your home!
The first day of each month is TRUE BLUE Day when we encourage all Webster County residents to wear royal blue in support of a drug free community.
Some background information — Webster County KY-ASAP was funded in 2002 through the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy. The key concept for KY-ASAP is changing policy around substance misuse. True Blue Drug Free Communities is in year 4 of the 5 year federal grant that promotes substance free living for all youth. The True Blue concept is around the notion that if youth are true to their family, faith, school, community, and/or future they will be less likely to experiment with substances. True Blue implemented Character Counts curriculum in all Webster County schools grades K-12 to better equip students to make positive choices and to be of good character.
Webster County KY-ASAP True Blue Drug Free Communities funds substance prevention and education programs in the local schools and community such as: Mini Teen Leadership Conference for 6th grade students, 5th grade Health Fair, Truth and Consequences for 8th grade students, Project Northland Slick Tracy for 6th graders, Community Town Hall meetings, various trainings/Lunch and Learns, supports law enforcement, supports treatment, hosts Chatter 4 Change podcast, and supports the True Blue Youth Crews in grades 4-6, 7-8, 9-12, and early college.
To learn more about the Webster County KY-ASAP True Blue Drug Free Communities Coalition contact our coordinator at email@example.com.
Though meetings have looked different, Webster County KY-ASAP Coalition has continue to meet during the Covid-19 pandemic. Starting in May, the Coalition’s bi-monthly meeting moved to Zoom. Virtual meetings have continued with both in-person and Zoom being offered for the November meeting. With the surge in cases locally, the January meeting was via Zoom only.
Just a few additional adaptations the coalition has made: online trainings for teachers and youth instead of in-person, Zoom meetings for Youth True Blue Crew members, Chatter 4 Change podcast providing information and support to youth, education provided to parents through handouts with food deliveries/pick-ups, faith-based meetings to collaborate resources, social media updates, Character Counts through Google classrooms.
A few True Blue activities during the pandemic:
For more than 40 years, the American Cancer Society has hosted the Great American Smokeout on the third Thursday of November. The Great American Smokeout is an opportunity for people who smoke to commit to healthy, smoke -free lives – not just for a day, but year round. The Great American Smokeout provides an opportunity for individuals, community groups, businesses, health care providers, and others to encourage people to use the date to make a plan to quit, or plan in advance and initiate a smoking cessation plan on the day of the event. The Great American Smokeout event challenges people to stop smoking and helps people learn about the many tools they can use to help them quit and stay quit.
For more information visit: https://www.cancer.org/healthy/stay-away-from-tobacco/great-american-smokeout.html
Webster County Residents may take unused prescription medications to the following locations during regular business hours:
Clay Drug Store, Clay
Dixon Drug Store, Dixon
Bell’s Drug Store, Sebree
Thrifty Pharmacy, Providence
Providence Police Department
Source: Ep. 4- A Dose of Prevention
The Dose of Prevention Challenge is a CADCA sponsored opportunity for coalitions to highlight their work during National Medicine Abuse Month each October. WC True Blue’s Chatter 4 Change Podcast Episode 4 is dedicated to prescription and Over-the-counter medicine misuse with guest speaker, Trina, a local pharmacist and the mother of Youth True Blue Crew Member and Podcaster Ryan. Check out this episode and more at Chatter 4 Change on Podbean or click the above link.
The Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) selected School Sector Engagement as a priority focus area this year. Site visits were planned to allow researchers to provide detailed examples to ONDCP regarding the type of work that some DFC coalitions are doing and offer the chance to learn from the people who are doing coalition work—about how coalitions operate, their challenges and successes, the strategies used to accomplish missions, and lessons that can be shared with other DFC-funded coalitions.
In late July, Webster County KY-ASAP True Blue DFC was contacted by the National DFC Research Team announcing the coalition’s selection as a virtual site visit location. The Research team selected True Blue based on information submitted in recent Progress Reports. The virtual site visit occurred during September with five focus groups of youth TB Crew members, parents, community stakeholders, coalition members, and school administrators; and extensive interviews with DFC staff and coalition leaders. Over the next few months, the Research team will complete data analysis and written dissertation to share with coalitions across the United States.
A few memories of the focus groups:
CLICK the link below for information on talking with college students about the risks of drinking
Webster County KY-ASAP True Blue DFC was represented at CADCA Mid-year for the third year. This year, Melea Ramin, Coalition Chairperson, Melissa Wolfe, Courtney Menser, Carolyn Sholar, Dianne McFarling, Caroline Denham, and Donna Bumpus attended CADCA’s virtual institute. Participants had the opportunity to view approximately 80 training sessions.
Webster County Ky-ASAP True Blue DFC collaborated with River Valley Prevention Center to provide TOO GOOD FOR DRUGS training (via ZOOM) for a group of teachers on August 12, 2020. Webster County Schools will implement this program in grades K-4 initially, adding additional grades later in the school year.
WASHINGTON – With families encouraged to stay at home due to the nationwide health crisis, the Drug Enforcement Administration is asking Americans to keep prescription medications safe and secure until they can properly dispose of them.
The Secure Your Meds awareness campaign addresses a vital public safety and health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. The campaign also prompts families to discuss the issue of controlled prescription drug abuse.
“Protecting the health and safety of our communities is DEA’s top priority, especially during the unprecedented public health emergency,” said DEA Acting Administrator Uttam Dhillon. “With Americans at home, families need to be even more vigilant and keep prescription medications safe, secure, and out of reach of children and others in the household.”
DEA holds its National Prescription Drug Take Back Day twice a year. However, because of the current nationwide coronavirus pandemic, DEA postponed the 2020 Spring Take Back Day, originally scheduled for April 25, 2020. DEA will reschedule Take Back day for a date shortly after the health crisis recedes and national emergency guidelines are lifted.
In the meantime, DEA wants to remind Americans to clean out their medicine cabinets and secure unused, unwanted, and expired prescription medications for the next National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, on a date to be determined.
Rates of prescription drug abuse in the United States are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.
Once the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lifts restrictions, DEA will reschedule Take Back Day. More information on the Secure Your Meds campaign and Take Back Day is available at http://www.DEATakeBack.com.
Webster County KY-ASAP has partnered with the Dixon Drug Store to provide a drive-thru drop-off location for unused medications during regular store hours. Unused prescription medications may also be returned to Clay Drug Store during regular business hours.
Have fun on social media by printing these fun “Not everyone’s doing it” cards and uploading a picture with your child holding these cards to brag how they are not engaging in drugs or alcohol! Make sure to include #NDAFW in your posts.
Webster County KY-ASAP True Blue DFC and Webster County Board of Education developed a plan in 2017 to implement Character Counts for all students, grades K-12. Character Counts is framework for developing positive character traits and may be implemented in schools, homes, and communities.
For more information and Character Counts activities visit charactercounts.org or on Facebook @CharacterCounts.
National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week is March 30-April 3, 2020. During the Coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic when so many families are in self-isolation is the perfect time to start talking with your children about family expectations around alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs. Children need clear set guidelines.
For tips on how to talk with your children visit:
March 10-12, 2020, Lily Martin, Raygan Ranes, and Seth Ranes attended the Kentucky Dover Youth2Youth Training in Louisville. Youth representing each Regional Prevention Center in Kentucky were asked to attend this training. The students were trained in Youth Recruitment, Policy Change, Presentation Skills, and Developing Community awareness and Media Campaigns.
Lily, Raygan, and Seth are members of the YES Youth Council and the WC True Blue Crew. They will collaborate with Dianne McFarling, River Valley Prevention Center Director, and Cora Cain, River Valley Youth Empowerment Prevention Specialist, to train Western Kentucky youth. River Valley Regional Prevention Center serves Daviess, Hancock, Henderson, McLean, Ohio, Union, and Webster. Webster County middle and elementary True Blue Crew members will also be trained using the Youth2Youth Toolkit.
Please join the Webster County True Blue Crew in welcoming home Tiffany Cole Hall who will be our guest speaker for the next True Blue Community training on March 25.
WC True Blue was represented at the annual CADCA Forum, February 2-6, 2020, by Melea Ramin, Coalition Chairperson, and Donna Bumpus, DFC Coordinator. Participants attended workshops on Youth Vaping; Gen-Z Marketing: Engaging the next Generation; Impacts of Marijuana Legalization; Addressing the Opioid Crisis in Rural Communities; Building Partnerships with Law Enforcement; and Exploring the Intersections of Opioids, Adverse Childhood Experiences and Suicide.
While attending the conference, WC True Blue was recognized as Runners Up for the National Dose of Prevention Award. The Dose of Prevention Award is sponsored by the Consumer Healthcare products Association (CHPA) and CADCA, this award recognizes member coalitions that have helped raise awareness about the dangers of over-the-counter cough medicine misuse and prescription drug misuses in their community during National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month in October, 2019.
National Prevention Week (NPW) is a public education platform that promotes prevention year-round through providing ideas, capacity building, tools, and resources to help individuals and communities make substance use prevention happen every day.
Source: National Prevention Week
If you ever wondered what is happening in Webster County, KY…here’s a list of just a few activities involving TRUE BLUE!
Webster County KY-ASAP
True Blue Drug Free Communities
Webster County True Blue is a partnership between Webster County Schools and Webster County Ky-Agency for Substance Abuse Policy (KY-ASAP) and is a 5-year grant funded initially in 2017. The True Blue concept is around the notion that youth must be more “True Blue” to themselves, school, community related to risky behavior. The 6 Pillars of Character Counts, Trustworthiness, Respect, Responsibility, Fairness, Caring, and Citizenship are taught throughout the school district and the community. KY-ASAP encourages WC residents to share the “True Blue” message by wearing blue on the 1st day of each month.
True Blue Accomplishments
- True Blue Day the 1st of each month
- WC Judge Executive Proclamation
- Community participation
- School participation
- Data Tools Implemented/Utilized
- Kentucky Incentives for Prevention (KIP)
- Annual Parent Enrollment Survey
- Youth Focus Groups
- Parent Focus Groups
- Character Counts
- Two Guidance Counselors attended National Training
- Guidance Counselors trained teachers
- Each school implemented Character Counts Initiative (in each classroom K-12)
- Faith-based initiative
- Quarterly training meetings with Drake University CC Trainers
- Utilization of the Character Counts App for teachers (coming soon)
- APEX afterschool CC programs
- Capstone afterschool CC programs
- Initiated True Blue Crews
- Youth (in each school)
- Training provided 2 times per year
- Monthly Meetings
- Community Service Projects throughout each year
- True Blue Camp
- Community/Health Fairs/Festivals
- Senior Citizens Health Fair
- Health First Health Fair
- Webster County Health Coalition Health Fair
- Clay Days
- Onton Hay Days
- Providence 4th of July Celebration
- Dixon Ducky Days
- Sebree Firecracker Run
- National Education Campaigns
- National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week
- True Blue Week (Red Ribbon Week)
- Take-down Tobacco Day/Kick Butts Day
- National Prevention Week
- Great American Smoke-out
- Substance Abuse Awareness Month
- A Dose of Prevention
- KY-ASAP/True Blue Professional Development
- Graduated from the National Coalition Academy
- Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA) Mid-year Institute
- Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA) National Forum
- KY-ASAP Coalition Annual Board Summit
- Kentucky Prevention Network Conference
- Rx Summit
- Kentucky School of Alcohol and Other Drug Studies
- ONDCP/CADCA Drug Free Communities National Research Study Participants
- Community Trainings:
- The Impact of Drugs on Communities – Monte Stiles (former federal prosecutor)
- Healthy Seniors
- The Impact of Human Trafficking on Communities
- Narcan Administration
- Trending Drugs
- Misuse of Prescription drugs (March 27th)
- The Youth E-Cig Epidemic
- Town Hall Meetings
- Community Conversations
- WC KY-ASAP/True Blue Supported Programs
- Truth and Consequences
- Mini Teen Leadership Conference
- Regional Teen Leadership Conference
- 5th Grade Health Fair
- Hello WCMS
- 5th Quarters
- Project Graduation
- Project Northland/Slick Tracy
- Too Good for Drugs
- Motivating Mentors
- Class Act
- Sources of Strength
- Senior Exit Interviews
- WCHS College and Career Fair
- Reality Store
- WC Gifted and Talented Leadership Camp
- WC Schools Open Houses
- Parent/Teacher Conference
- TRUST (state tobacco youth program)
- Green Dot
- 2 Hour Tour
- True Blue Camps
- Medicine take-back box Locations:
- Clay Drug Store
- Dixon Drug Store
- Bell’s Drug Store (Sebree)
- Thrifty Pharmacy (Providence)
- Providence Police Department
- WC Sheriff’s Office
- Public Relations
- Website: wctrueblue.org
- Facebook: @wctrueblue
- Twitter: @wctrueblue
- “Chatter 4 Change” Podcast Platforms:
- Google Podcast
- Amazon Music/Audible
- Apple Podcasts (coming soon)
- Pandora (coming soon)
Other Community Partners/Collaborations
City of Dixon
Green River District Health Department
(Regional Health Council)
Health First Community Health Center
Kentucky Department for Child Based Services
Murray State University
National Faith-Based Prevention Alliance
River Valley Behavior Health
River Valley Prevention Center
United Community Bank
Webster County Bar Association
Webster County Community Education
Webster County Drug Court
Webster County Extension Services
Webster County Family Resource/Youth Service Centers
Webster County Fiscal Court
Webster County Food Services
Webster County Gifted and Talented
Webster County Guardian Angel Project
Webster County Health Coalition
Webster County Senior Citizens
Webster County 21st Century Programs
West KY Teen Challenge
Board Members/Sector Representatives
Health – Samantha Winebarger
Business/Parent – Wade Raymer (Dixon Elementary)
School – Rachel Gooch (Providence and Clay FRYSC)
Youth Serving Agency – Courtney Menser (YES Youth Service Center)
Natalie Green (Webster County Extension Office)
Law Enforcement – Todd Jones (Providence Police Chief/Retired KSP)
William Braden (Sebree Police Chief/Retired KSP)
Youth – Lily Martin (WCHS True Blue Crew), Tyler Kuykendall, Raygan Ranes
State/Local Government Agency Substance Abuse – Dianne McFarling, Brook Arnold (RVBH-RPC)
Media – Regina Catlett (Sebree Banner)
Religious/Fraternal Organization – Jody Hughes (Lakeview Baptist Church)
Cameron Edwards (Webb Memorial UMC)
Civic/Volunteer – Heather Roy (Murray State University and Motivating Mentors)
Other Organization for Reducing Substance Abuse – Gary Hall, Ethan Martin (Tobacco Control Specialist)
Caroline Denham (West KY Teen Challenge)
FRYSC – Melissa Wolfe (Connections FRYSC)
Local Government – Leesa Russell (The Office of Webster County Judge Executive)
Krista Massey (Webster County Drug Court)
Melea Ramin, Chairperson
Wade Raymer, Vice Chairperson
Melissa Wolfe, Co-Secretary
Carolyn Sholar, DFC Director/District Contact, Co-Secretary
Donna Bumpus, DFC Coordinator
The mission of WC True Blue is to bring together all sectors of the community to prevent substance misuse, especially among youth.