We are given two goals: 1) Build community collaborations and 2) Prevent and reduce youth substance use. We organize by sectors: parents, business, education, media, youth-serving organizations, law enforcement, faith/fraternal, government, civic/volunteer, health care, substance abuse professionals, and youth. We include culturally relevant outreach to our various ethnic groups. The board sets policy, committees do the work and staff supports it all.
It’s $125,000 a year for five years, totaling $625,000. Unlike most nonprofits, the DFC funds organization-building expenditures like salaries, office space and supplies, and marketing but not the programs and services donors like to underwrite. We want to fund programs and services so we started a separate 501(c)(3) nonprofit.
To measure our impact, Benjamin Salazar, director of GCC’s Alcohol & Drug Studies Program, will convene a data summit for professionals who quantify arrests, hospitalizations, deaths, suspensions, etc. These facts are indisputable. We also use results from student surveys and hope their answers are reliable. We need good empirical evidence for grants, reports and to guide our actions because our grant requires us to address actual community conditions, and not perceptions of problems.
In this, your anecdotes and personal stories are valuable! If you say teens are drinking alcohol at homes, police calls to parties match, we can institute a community-centered remedy. Please be an arrow pointing us in the correct direction. Even if you don’t have time or you don’t feel integrated into the community to speak for everyone else, think again. We can’t address what’s really going on with parents and children without you.
Look for a return of community forums, parent workshops, and the start of intimate parent-to-parent chats. Invite us to speak before your group, or to you. While you’re a valuable asset, if you prefer to donate money or the services of your close, personal friend who also happens to be a celebrity looking for a charity to promote, that works, too.