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January 2019
Program Spotlight: Custer County Coalition
Substance Abuse Primary Prevention Grant Opportunity
ODP Welcomes a New Administrator
ICADD Substance Abuse Prevention Award
Be the Parents is Back
State Opioid Coordinator Job Opportunity
Program Spotlight: Custer County Coalition
Pairing classrom curriculum with alternative activities

Rose Cheff,  Program Director for Custer County Coalition, had a challenge: how could she fit a youth substance abuse prevention education curriculum into an already packed school day?  The answer, make Mondays a lunch-and-learn day and invite any and all students who want to attend to join in.
Armed with an evidence-based program, a few curious students and an empty classroom, she began.  Now half-way through the school year, Rose is seeing almost 20 students participate in her LifeSkills Training lessons, and she reports, "attendance is growing, and the kids keep asking if we can meet on Tuesdays as well!"
Botvin LifeSkills Training (LST) is proven to reduce alcohol, tobacco, drug abuse, and violence, while supporting the social and emotional development of youth.  LST curriculum provides a foundation for additional strategies and activities to build a comprehensive program. For example, this holiday season  Challis LST Middle School students took their learning beyond the classroom with an alternative activity at their community assisted living facility.  Students were paired with older residents to complete Christmas craft projects, sing songs, and share stories.  Community service projects like this enable students to acquire real-life skills and knowledge, as well as provide a service to those who need it most.
Rose states, "I am really proud of these kids.  There is a lot of natural peer-to-peer mentoring happening and I am watching several of them take on leadership roles."  Education plus positive relationships will help them navigate peer pressure.
Congrats to the Custer County Coalition for providing opportunities for the participation of youth in activities that exclude drug use, foster community service and promote healthy choices.

CLICK HERE to learn more about the Custer County Coalition.
Substance Abuse Primary Prevention Grant Opportunity 
FY2020 Application Opening February 1, 2019

Funding Opportunity Title:
Substance Abuse Block Grant
Primary Prevention Programs
This application is to be used by prevention providers seeking funding to deliver substance abuse services directly to youth, families and other at-risk individuals of Idaho, and/or community-based coalitions, agencies and organizations seeking funding to employ environmental strategies designed to reduce the impact of substance abuse at the community level.  
Due Date for Applications:                           
5:00 PM (MST), March 15, 2019
Anticipated Total Funding Available: $1,600,000
Estimated Number of Awards:
Average Award Amount:
Grant Recipients Notified:
June 1, 2019
Grant Award Period:
July 1, 2019 - June 30, 2020
Application Submission:
Applications must be completed and submitted online. Additional information will be posted to 
Eligible Applicants:
Eligible applicants include an governmental entity (including tribal entities), such as counties, cities, schools and school districts, local law enforcement agencies, other public entities and non-profit private entitied such as community-based organizations. Federal regulations (Section 90.135, HHS) prohibit the awarding of Block Grant funds to any entity other than a public or non-profit entity.
Submit Questions to:
Marianne King, Grant Project Director
(208) 854-3043

This funding may not be used for substance abuse treatment. Prevention service(s) provided prior to the signing of a grant award document will not be eligible for reimbursement.

Applicants assume all costs associated with the preparation of this grant application.

Grant awards are contingent upon funds appropriated by federal funding agencies and the Idaho Legislature.
ODP Welcomes a New Administrator

Meet Melinda S. Smyser

The Office of Drug Policy is happy to introduce our new administrator, Melinda S. Smyser. 

Melinda is a former school counselor with 30 years of experience in education. She also served as the Safe and Drug Free School coordinator for the Caldwell School District. 

Melinda says,"I am excited for the opportunity to work collaboratively with all of our stakeholders who share a vision of an Idaho free from the social, health, and economic consequences of substance abuse, and I am honored to put my experience to work for Governor Little and his administration."

Melinda represented Canyon and Gem counties in the Idaho Senate from 2009 through 2012, serving on the Health and Welfare and Commerce committees and as Vice Chair of Agriculture. She served as U.S. Senator Jim Risch's Southwest Idaho Regional Director for five years and most recently served as the Director of the Idaho Department of Labor. 

She received a bachelor of science with a double major in C/T/Design and Education and Extension from the University of Idaho. She has a master's degree in Education/Counseling from the College of Idaho.

The Canyon County native is a friend of Agriculture, an Idaho School Counselor of the Year, and founding member of the Mentoring Network. She and her husband, attorney and former State Senator Skip Smyser, have four grown children.

Her favorite motto is "Live, laugh and love today, tomorrow is fleeting."

ICADD Substance Abuse Prevention Award
Deadline for Nominations Extended to January 31st
The deadline to nominate individuals for the Idaho Conference on Alcohol and Drug Dependency Substance Abuse Prevention Award has been extended to January 31, 2019. The award is designed to recognize an outstanding Idaho substance abuse prevention professional. To be considered for the award nominated individuals must be strong prevention advocates, demonstrating leadership, best practice service delivery, community involvement and their commitment to substance abuse prevention. 

Keep in mind that only information that you provide will be used to assess the nominee's suitability for an award. Please be thorough, yet succinct. A list of the nominees, with the responses you provide, will be sent to the prevention community to vote on the final award winner.
Previous Substance Abuse Prevention Award winners include Kay Bennett, Darin Burrell, Monte Stiles, Nancy Lopez, Terry Pappin, and Karen DesAulniers. Nominations for any previous award recipients will not be considered.

CLICK HERE to complete the nomination form. 

Be the Parents is Back
Underage drinking prevention campaign revived
Be the Parents is ODP's underage drinking prevention campaign geared  toward parents of Id aho yo uth ages 8-20. Be the Parents seeks to help parents understand the risks of underage drinking and provides resources to help parents prevent it. This includes ways to boost protective factors like staying engaged and supporting youth in pursuing their passions.

The campaign has been active since 2015 and after a recent hiatus in promotional activities and social media presence, the campaign is back! Want to get involved?
  • You can like Be the Parents on Facebook or follow @BeTheParents on its brand new Instagram account. 
  • Read and share the monthly blog post on This month it talks about a different kind of new year's resolution-one to create strong family bonds. 
  • If you like information in your inbox, register for the Be the Parents e-newsletter.
  • Keep an eye out on social media in February for the Be the Parents 30-day Challenge: Thirty simple ways for parents to stay engaged and bond with their kids. Parents can follow along with the checklist in the Parent Guide, available to order here
ODP still has many Be the Parents materials that can be ordered for use in classrooms and after-school programs or to share with parents. All materials from posters to conversation cards are free. Click Here to see what's available and place an order.
State Opioid Coordinator Job Opportunity
Through the Division of Behavioral Health
The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare's Division of Behavioral Health is recruiting for a Project Manager 1 position in the Operations Unit.  They are seeking candidates who have knowledge and/or experience in behavioral health, prevention, and business experience writing and monitoring grants.
This position will serve as Idaho's State Opioid Coordinator. The primary responsibilities of this position will include ensuring coordinated efforts are occurring between the Idaho entities receiving various streams of funding coming into the state to address the opioid crisis; cooperate and coordinate with relevant local, state, and federal grantees; provide grantees with insight into current project development by means of federal funding to reduce duplicated efforts.
To view the full announcement or to apply, please click here.
This is an open competitive announcement.  Anyone who wishes to be considered for this position should apply by January 23, 2019.

The Idaho Office of Drug Policy leads Idaho's substance abuse policy and prevention efforts by developing and implementing strategic action plans and collaborative partnerships to reduce drug use and related crime, thereby improving the health and safety of all Idahoans.

We envision an Idaho free from the devastating social, health, and economic consequences of substance abuse.