FOCUS Monthly Newsletter
August 2022
REGISTER NOW – Space is limited!
2022 AL Youth Mental Health Conference (AYMHC)
September 21, 2022 at Shocco Springs Conference Center
1314 Shocco Springs Rd, Talladega, AL 35160


Early Bird Registration $25 - Deadline September 7, 2022

Register NOW for the best rate! 
Late Registration/Onsite $35

2 Hours of Professional Development through PowerSchool (you must register through PowerSchool to receive professional development) and social work CEUs (Pending) will be offered. Certificates of Attendance will also be available. 
ESSER Funds Eligible


Learn more about the Keynote Speaker here! Don't miss this valuable In-Person event at Shocco Springs Conference Center, September 21, 2022.

Visit to register and for information.
New! 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline!
988 is now the active phone number that will route callers to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. This shorter number is easier to remember, and it provides free and confidential support for anyone in distress.
Be sure to share this updated information with staff and students in your school and community. Let everyone know that when they call, text or chat 988, they will be connected to trained counselors who will listen and help, 24/7. They will even assist you if you know of someone who is in distress. This can be reassuring when you are trying to assist a student or peer and need professional help.
*The previous Lifeline phone number (1-800-273-TALK) will always remain available for people in emotional distress or suicidal crisis.
Are you interested in
Youth Mental Health First Aid Certification? 

Register today by emailing

This course is limited to 30 participants! 

Date: Friday, November 4, 2022

Shelby County Instructional Services Center
601 1st Street South
Alabaster, AL 35007

YMHFA Certification is valued at $170.00. Thanks to a donation from the FOCUS Program, attending learners may participate and attain certification at no charge.

Kim Bailey, MEd, ALC
Assistant FOCUS Director, Central AL
Retired Shelby County Schools Counseling Supervisor

Jennifer Bailey, EdS
Director of Student Services, Vestavia City Schools

For more information about mental health first aid, visit: 
Register Your School with FOCUS!
This will allow you access to our many resources and enable you to begin your “focus” on next year’s concerns for your students and campus. Having your school registered and students recruited before a new school year begins is half the battle of “Making a Difference” in your school and community.
Congratulations to Adam Oliver
the “2022 Difference Maker”
FOCUS Program’s Outstanding Facilitator
(Birmingham, AL) FOCUS is pleased to announce Adam Oliver, Chelsea High School, as the winner of the 2022 Difference Maker Award which recognizes the most outstanding educator facilitating FOCUS in Alabama! The Difference Maker Award was created to honor those whose passion, enthusiasm, and leadership have resulted in real successes in the prevention of adolescent risk behaviors in their school and community. As the winner of this award, Mr. Oliver received $1,000 cash and a trophy.
An individual nominating Mr. Oliver stated, “Mr. Oliver puts a lot of energy and hard work into our Peer Helper Program. He often does so, without much recognition. He cares so much about the students in our program and throughout the school. We would love to be able to show him just how much we appreciate his dedication and caring heart.”
Mr. Oliver has been teaching since 2016. This is his sixth year at Chelsea High School, where he mainly teaches seniors in economics, government, AP Macroeconomics, and AP US Government. His first few years at Chelsea he was an assistant to their Peer Helpers Sponsor who led them in being a FOCUS School and doing numerous FOCUS activities for the school. He became the sponsor for the Peer Helpers and they continued to participate with FOCUS through attending the FOCUS Rally, having FOCUS leadership speak to their group and hosting them for events like their Mental Health Awareness Week.
They have 29 passionate student leaders who participate in FOCUS, organized under their Peer Helper Program. They are made up of juniors and seniors who are committed to making a difference in their school through their example and through activities that try to shape a healthier student experience for everyone at Chelsea High School. During the past year, students led an Impact Day Student Conference for about 200 of their students, where they led both large and small groups in activities and discussions related to combating bullying, prejudice, social isolation, and other challenges for students. The students also planned a Mental Health Awareness Week where each day different topics were emphasized to help remove the stigma and encourage everyone to have a place to seek help if needed. That week concluded with a Mental Health Fair, where representatives from more than 10 different organizations set up booths and talked to hundreds of the students about topics ranging from struggling with eating disorders, dealing with alcohol and substance abuse, dealing with depression/anxiety and self-harm, and a host of other issues among high schoolers. They have also done several other activities throughout the year. The students are active in Big Brothers Big Sisters, community service projects, Freshmen Mentoring groups, and numerous encouragement and informational promotions around the school’s campus.
Mr. Oliver obtained his multiple degrees from Samford University. His undergraduate degree is in history and his graduate degree is in Divinity and Education. He lives in Birmingham and has been married for 12 years to his wife, Amy. They have 2 amazing cats. Some of his hobbies include being a big sports fan, reading, traveling and playing golf.
We are honored to recognize Adam Oliver for his outstanding leadership! Congratulations and thank you to Mr. Oliver for his work in reducing the incidence of adolescent risk behaviors and truly Making a Difference in the lives of students!     
Visit for information on FOCUS and to follow us on social media platforms @AlabamaFocus. 
Connect with FOCUS!
Stay up to date on everything that is happening with FOCUS by following us on social media! Don't hesitate, follow us today!
Monthly Health Observances
We encourage all FOCUS schools to engage in at least one health observance activity each month. Each month has some excellent choices for students on your campuses to “Make a Difference” and to encourage their peers to participate.

  • 1-30  National Immunization Awareness Month
  • 1-30  National Breastfeeding Month
  • 1-30  Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month

  • 1-30  National Suicide Prevention Month
  • 1-30  Childhood Cancer Awareness Month
  • 1-30  National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month
  • 1-30   Sexual Health Awareness Month
  • 8-14   National Suicide Prevention Week


FOCUS values continued partnerships with the following state and community organizations.

Alabama Department of Public Health
Alabama Department of Education
Alabama Campaign for Adolescent Sexual Health
Addiction Prevention Coalition
Children's Policy Council
Council for Leaders in Alabama Schools (CLAS)
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama