Washington, D.C.— The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) announced an additional round of 42 new grants for its Drug-Free Communities (DFC) Support Program, bringing the number of total grants to more than 700 for Fiscal Year (FY) 2019. The 42 additional grants announced, combined with the 150 new grants announced in October, represent a total Federal investment of approximately $24 million to new community coalitions alone in FY 2019.
Coalition for McKinney Drug Free Youth, an initiative of The FreeStyle Foundation from McKinney, Texas was one of the grant recipients and will receive $625,000 in DFC grant funds to involve and engage their local community to prevent substance use among youth. This grant is in addition to a $1million dollar grant awarded in October of last year from the State of Texas.
“Our goal is to make McKinney a drug-free place for our youth,” said Brenda Chabot, Executive Director. “Prevention is a powerful tool to counteract drug use in our community, and we will use this funding to help youth in McKinney to make healthy choices about substance use. We invite the community to join us at our next quarterly networking meeting on Friday, March 27th, 12PM at the Stonebridge Ranch Community Association, Community Room, 6201 Virginia Parkway, McKinney. Our speaker is Susan Thoemke, a local parent who lost her son to a drug overdose.”
U.S. Senator John Cornyn released the following statement, “When it comes to protecting young Texans from the dangers of substance abuse, we must use every tool in our box. I am grateful to the Trump Administration for investing in the young residents of McKinney and engaging the entire community in our next generations’ health.”
“A critical element of the Trump Administration’s whole-of-government approach to tackling the drug crisis is stopping substance use among our youth before it starts. The hundreds of Drug-Free Communities our office administers across the country implement effective, localized prevention programs to ensure the next generation understands the dangers of substance misuse. We will continue investing in the DFC Program both because it is a critical part of our mission to save lives and its success in reducing past 30-day substance use among youth,” ONDCP Director Jim Carroll said.
In June, ONDCP released the 2018 Executive Summary and End-of-Year Report for its DFC grant recipients, which demonstrate the DFCs are effective in reducing youth substance use rates in their communities.
Background on the Drug-Free Communities Support Program
The Drug-Free Communities (DFC) Support Program, created by the Drug-Free Communities Act of 1997, is the Nation’s leading effort to mobilize communities to prevent youth substance use. Directed by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), the DFC Program provides grants to community coalitions to strengthen the infrastructure among local partners to create and sustain a reduction in local youth substance use.
The DFC Program provides grants of up to $625,000 over five years to community coalitions that facilitate youth and adult participation at the community level in local youth drug use prevention efforts.
Recognizing that local problems need local solutions, DFC-funded coalitions engage multiple sectors of the community and employ a variety of environmental strategies to address local drug problems. Coalitions are comprised of community leaders, parents, youth, teachers, religious and fraternal organizations, healthcare and business professionals, law enforcement, and media. By involving the community in a solution-oriented approach, DFC also helps those youth at risk for substance use recognize that the majority of our Nation’s youth choose not to use drugs.