FOCUS Monthly Newsletter
September 2023
2023 FOCUS Rally

September 20, 2023 at Shocco Springs Conference Center
1314 Shocco Springs Rd, Talladega, AL 35160

Early Bird Registration $30 - Deadline September 13, 2023

Adults may earn 3 hours of Professional Development through PowerSchool (you must register through PowerSchool to receive professional development) and AL Board of Social Work CEUs will be offered. Certificates of Attendance will also be available. 

Register by September 13, to avoid late fees! Late Registration/Onsite $35.

Learn more about the Keynote Speaker here! Don't miss this valuable In-Person event at Shocco Springs Conference Center, September 20, 2023.
Visit to register and for information.
We are excited to welcome Zavius Kidd as a FOCUS intern for the fall semester. Zavius is a student at Jacksonville State University (JSU) pursuing a Bachelors of Art in Integrated Studies. He will be dividing his time as an intern between FOCUS and Talladega County Schools. 

Zavius has exhibited strong leadership skills since his time as the FOCUS President at B.B. Comer High School. Since graduating, he has volunteered with FOCUS and has been a frequent speaker in schools and assisted with the FOCUS Rallies. While at JSU, Zavius has been a SGA Senator, Chaplin, Senate Campus Life Committee Chair, Vice President of Student Culinary Council, and a JSU Ambassador. 

Zavius is available to assist FOCUS schools in North East Alabama. Contact Carol Sprayberry at [email protected] to schedule Zavius to help kickoff your program, present, or help plan prevention activities. 
FOCUS Joins in the Fight to Prevent Suicide
We can all help prevent suicide. Preventing suicide requires strategies at all levels of society. This includes prevention and protective strategies for individuals, families, and communities. Every year mental health organizations and individuals across the U.S. and around the world raise awareness of suicide prevention during September, National Suicide Prevention Month. Everyone can help prevent suicide by learning the warning signs, promoting prevention and resilience, and a committing to social change.

Please visit the links below to learn more about the fight to prevent suicide.
The 988 Lifeline provides 24/7, confidential support to people in suicidal crisis or mental health-related distress. By calling or texting 988, you'll connect to mental health professionals with the Lifeline network.
The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness.
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.
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.
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.

  • 1-31  Domestic Violence Awareness Month
  • 1-31  National Bullying Prevention Month
  • 1-31  National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
  • 6-12   Mental Illness Awareness Week
  • 9         National Walk to School Day
  • 11       National Depression Screening Day
  • 23-31 Red Ribbon Week


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

Alabama Department of Public Health
Alabama Department of Education
Addiction Prevention Coalition
Children's Policy Council
Council for Leaders in Alabama Schools (CLAS)
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama
Be Part of Making A Difference!