Hunterdon County Safe Communities Coalition Awarded Prestigious STOP ACT Grant

On September 13, 2012, Pamela S. Hyde, Administrator of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) announced the award and anticipated future funding of 81 new grants, totaling up to $15.1 million over four years, to prevent underage drinking through the Sober Truth on Preventing Underage Drinking Act (STOP ACT) grant program.

Hunterdon County Safe Communities Coalition, through its fiscal agent Hunterdon Prevention Resources (HPR), is proud to announce that they are recipients of STOP ACT grant funding. The Coalition will receive $48,258 annually over four years.

The STOP ACT grant program provides funding for community-based coalitions throughout the country to prevent and reduce alcohol use among youth ages 12-20. The program strengthens collaboration among communities, as well as federal, state, local and tribal governments in efforts to instill an active commitment to prevent underage drinking.

The Coalition has integrated the STOP ACT program strategies into the vision and strategies of its Underage Drinking Action Team. The Action Team will address Underage Drinking strategies in Hunterdon County that will change social norms related to alcohol use among county youth. The Action Team has pledged:

  • to strengthen collaboration among community sectors including; education, health, county, state and federal agencies;
  • to study and change the "social norms" that encourage underage drinking through the use of evidence-based practices and proven environmental strategies;
  • to provide educational materials to the public about underage drinking;
  • to expand the youth coalitions among diverse community groups to address underage drinking, and;
  • to advocate for laws and practices that will help curb underage drinking and availability.

"Underage drinking is a major public health problem which endangers the health and lives of our nation's young people and others," said Ms. Hyde. "The STOP program is based on the simple truth that to effectively address this problem we need to educate and persuade kids not to risk their health and futures through underage drinking."

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