July 2018
It Doesn't Have To Be A Death Sentence
Discovering that a loved one, whether or not they're your child, is struggling with substance use, or abuse, has the potential to touch everyone - not just the addict. Often, the lines of support and enablement blur - understandably of course. No one wants to see someone they care for struggling, especially with something as debilitating as addiction. For the one struggling, taking personal responsibility, no matter the amount of pain or self reflection necessary, is the only way to maintain a path of healing. For those on the other end, whether or not you've been lied to, stolen from, or are dealing with your own wake of emotions, please embrace that it isn't your fault .

At YouthZone, we've integrated programming to address the core of addiction - emotional trauma; at their roots in early adolescence. By promoting healthy ways to cope with stress, or mental illness, such as talk therapy and drug/alcohol education, it's our goal to end addiction in our community's youth population.

Currently, our "Trusted Adult" initiative aims to train our community's adults in addressing the signs of drug, or alcohol, use. The purpose, of course, is to maintain a safe space to talk about these issues, without judgement. By acting out of fear, reacting rather than responding , we greatly increase the possibility of getting shut out by those in need of guidance. Next week, this program will visit The Green Joint , before business hours, for information on current youth Marijuana trends - understanding an issue, rather than demonizing it.

The best part about YouthZone's substance awareness and prevention programs; they work - very well, but the need is also high. Out of the 550 sampled YouthZone clients, 271 of them, which translates to 49.3%, were referred to programming due to a drug, or alcohol, offense. In nearly half of these cases, the client was older than 16 years of age. On average, from intake to discharge, clients reduce their substance use by statistically significant levels - in three out of the five categories measured.

All of this is made possible by the consistent support shown to our client base from the team of dedicated case managers on staff. The shining star, and expert in substance use prevention, is Kenny Hamburg. He's the current drug and alcohol counselor for YouthZone's clients. By running weekly group sessions for youth referred for substance use charges , he provides a safe space, as mentioned above, to address the struggles our kids are facing. This is the type of compassion, and structured forgiveness, that encourages our clients to continue making the healthier choice.
Staff Spotlight - Chris Perry
After completing his undergraduate in 2014, Chris followed his calling to work with trauma affected youth by joining the SAY Program at the Good Samaritan Boys Ranch in southwest Missouri. It's one of the largest sexual offending recovery programs of the Mid-West. Over the course of these first two years out of college, he had the privilege to serve youth ranging from the ages 11 to 20. While this experience could at times be very emotionally heavy, it allowed Chris as he put it "to hit the ground running." Working with such an at-risk population of youth prepared him for the work he's currently undertaking at YouthZone.

Before joining the YouthZone team, he had originally moved to the Roaring Fork Valley to take some time for himself. During that time he worked at a couple of the local restaurants and taught ski lessons at Snow Mass. While he really did enjoy the opportunity to ski 6 months out of the year he knew that this wasn't what he was called to do.

By August of 2017 Chris had been calling the Roaring Fork Valley home for nine months and throughout that time kept hearing our organization's name come up repeatedly in conversation. He decided that it'd be better to just reach out to YouthZone and connect rather than wait for a volunteer opportunity to come about. It's rather serendipitous, because when he inquired about how to get more involved with our communities' youth he was offered a job instead.

Chris was hired on as our Wrap-Around High-Fidelity Facilitator, but after two months moved to where his true interest lay; as a case manager. Everyday Chris connects with his clients on a level that only they can truly appreciate, because like the youth that attend services he too struggled through some trying times in high school. Thankfully, with the help of some mentors, he was able to make it through and overcome his hardship. Moreover, it gave him the skills necessary to truly relate with the youth he serves, and we couldn't be happier that he's teaching them the interpersonal skills needed to achieve true self love.
'High in Plain Sight' Workshop Event
This Workshop is FREE and breakfast is provided

DATE: July 23rd, 2018
TIME: 8:00am - 12:00pm
LOCATION: Glenwood Springs High School - 1521 Grand Ave.

RSVP: ascott@youthzone.com

This workshop is for parents, trusted adults, law enforcement, probation officers, school administration, treatment providers and counselors. This session is unique, in that it provides over 120 visual aids for attendees to hold and become familiar with. In today's culture everything is person-specific and has different meanings to different individuals. For each person to help prevent youth and adult substance abuse, you MUST know what is going on in your community. These new trends are very popular and it is important for all who are involved in prevention, education, treatment or enforcement to understand these sweeping changes in the drug culture.

This workshop covers alcohol and drug clothing, alcoholic energy drinks, alco-pops, alcohol and drug concealment methods and containers, drug paraphernalia, drug related music and groups, logos, stickers, new technology, youth party tendencies, party games, non-traditional alcoholic beverages, social networking sites, synthetic drugs, OTC drugs, inhalants, concentrates, E-cigarettes, and popular party drugs.
El Pomar Award of Excellence
This month YouthZone was awarded the El Pomar Foundation's 'Award of Excellence'
Please take a moment to follow the link below. The Post Independent covered an in depth story on this honor.
Thank You!
Lisa Sobke
Thank you Lisa Sobke for 7 years of service for the RFV's youth
Thank You!!!
Lisa Detweiler
Thank you Lisa Detweiler for 12 years of service for the RFV's youth
July's Event Fliers