April 2014   

Charging Ahead with Green Dot in Wrangell and Petersburg

In the hundreds! Wrangell and Petersburg have shared Green Dot with hundreds of their citizens and have given away hundreds of green dot pins and sweatshirts. Hallmarks of their rollout include:


  • Petersburg’s Bystander Training finished with 16 participants and a waitlist for the upcoming May training.
  • Overview speeches occurred during elementary school staff meetings, at a school board meeting, with Petersburg Children Center's staff (see above photo) and EMS volunteers and during Lady’s Night at Kito's Kave Bar, with the owner of the bar giving most of the presentation!


  • Wrangell’s Bystander Training will be on April 12th, following the health fair and Choose Respect Day. Green Dot giveaways will occur at both these events. 
  • Green Dot presentations occurred at an in-service for high school, middle school, and elementary school students, with the Garnet Grit Betties, the local Roller Derby girls (who championed Green Dot gear while serving food at Raymes’ Bar), and during tea with 50 women at the American Legion. Other outreach efforts included an interview on KSTK radio, an article in the Wrangell Sentinel, a borough assembly meeting (which was aired on the radio) and a school board meeting.
  • The first week of March was declared “Green Dot Coffee Week” at the Stikine Coffee Shop!
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Digital Storytelling, Photo Voice and Other Community Activities in Fairbanks

The Fairbanks Prevention Coalition completed its first digital story telling workshop with the Fairbanks Native Association’s Tribal Home Visiting staff who are planning to use this strategy with the families with whom they work. Digital storytelling involves the creation of a short movie, typically three to five minutes in length, with the voice of the person telling their story. Through imagination, interaction, and computer technology, the storyteller connects the viewer with his/her experience and lesson(s) learned. You can view stories at the Coalition’s YouTube channel!

At the Tanana Chiefs Conference Health Fair, the coalition showcased its PhotoVoice project which connects people with its social message through photography. Many people stopped by and asked questions. Coalition members distributed prevention information and generated interest in the coalition.

During the Arctic Winter Games Health Day, the coalition sponsored an “Above the Influence” activity where youth wrote “Tag It” and “Bring It” poster ideas to share the positive influences in their lives. Learn more by visiting the coalition’s Facebook page.

The coalition will also be working with Lathrop High School’s Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) group during Alcohol Awareness Month in April. Each week, the coalition will provide information, games and activities for the students during lunch time.

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Gift Card Giveaway

Short 5-minute online surveys have been administered after each SPF SIG online training to assess how useful these training are. If you completed one of these before March, your name was entered into a raffle. Susan Benson from RurALCAP was the lucky winner of the $50 Amazon.com gift card drawn at the end of February. Congratulations, Susan!

Another gift card will be drawn at the end of June. Please continue to attend trainings and provide feedback. Each training survey you complete increases your chances of winning the next $50 gift card.

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Successes and Lessons Learned

The State’s evaluation team is nearly finished conducting interviews with staff members from each grantee to learn about individual and coalition experiences during the strategy selection and implementation process. Each interview has provided a wealth of information and a unique perspective on the community implementation process. The evaluators will be sharing and highlighting successes and lessons learned.

The evaluators are gearing up to conduct final evaluation site visits this summer. Agendas and dates will be arranged and organized with grantee staff soon.

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National Prevention Week: May 18-24, 2014

National Prevention Week is a SAMHSA-supported annual health observance dedicated to increasing public awareness of, and action around, substance abuse and mental health issues. Explore the National Prevention Week  website to learn more about how you can get involved, from planning a community event to participating in the “I Choose” Project.

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 spring (April and May) and summer (June and July,) and the timing of National Prevention Week helps to educate young people and their families at this crucial time of year.

National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence

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Summary of Best Practices in Underage Drinking Prevention

SAMSHA’s 2013 Report to Congress on the Prevention and Reduction of Underage Drinking includes readily accessible reviews of the latest research on the extent of underage drinking and problems associated with it. According to the report alcohol “remains the most widely used substance of abuse among America's youth," having "profound negative consequences for underage drinkers, their families, their communities, and society as a whole."  The report provides a summary of underage drinking prevention best practices as recommended by key Federal studies and reports. It finds wide variation in the extent to which states have adopted these best practices.

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Previous Trainings

In case you missed Evaluation Expectations and Considerations: Determining When, If, and How to Work with an Evaluator, click here to view the webinar. 

Past training materials and presentations are available online at the Training Opportunities page of the SPF website.

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In the News

Green Dot – Ending violence (Homer Tribune)

Seven goals met in Healthy Alaskans 2020 challenge (Fairbanks Daily News-Miner)

170 communities in Alaska are rallying to end rape – and you should join them (CNN)

Governor Leads Valdez Choose Respect Rally (Alaska Public Media)

Kids2College Program Teaches Students to Plan for Their Future (State of Alaska Online Public Notices)

Riskier lifestyles contribute to shorter Alaskan life expectancy (KNBA News)

‘Flying Wild’ Alaska star in Nunavut to talk about suicide (Alaska Dispatch)

Finland Imposes Further Restrictions on Alcohol Advertising (Alaska Dispatch)

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Potential Funding Opportunities for Grantees

From time to time funding opportunities come to our attention that may be relevant for grantee communities. Please feel free to pass these along to others in your community who might be interested.

Alaska Department of Health & Social Services - Community Initiative Matching Grants

  • Description: The Community Initiative Matching Grants program provides for services targeting those most vulnerable and in jeopardy of a life-threatening event, such services being necessary to prevent serious physical hardship or death. The program is designed to provide a broad range of basic, essential human services in those areas of the state not served by the Department’s Human Services Community Matching Grant Program: Fairbanks North Star Borough, Matanuska-Susitna Borough, and the Municipality of Anchorage.
  • Eligibility: For applicant qualification requirements, view pages 6-7 of the solicitation.
  • Award Information: Funds available for this program are anticipated to total $89,500. Individual award amounts will not exceed $44,750. It is the intent of the department to make no more than one award in each of the three regions.
  • Deadline: April 23, 2014
  • Contact Information: Amy O’Mara at 907-465-4709 or amy.omara@alaska.gov


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