Prevention through Connection
February 2018
Love In Action
Building Community to Prevent Substance Abuse
Rallying on Capitol Hil

In early February, Jen DeSena and I traveled to Washington DC to attend CADCA's 28th Annual National Leadership Forum. This 4-day conference brings together over 3,000 participants representing coalitions from all regions of the country, for opportunities to learn the latest strategies to fight substance abuse from nationally-known prevention experts, federal administrators, and policymakers.
One of the keynote speakers, Khiree Smith, attorney and global human rights advocate, had powerful words to share about the challenges in a community to prevent substance abuse. Khiree suggested that we live in a world that is often anti-community. We focus on the wrong things: I instead of we. Competition instead of connection. I win instead of win-win. With our youth, we try to control rather than coach, ignore rather than listen, force rather than mold. If we are truly going to make a difference in this national epidemic, we need to change this mindset and come together through love in action.
Love in action means considering how we build a strong community that emphasizes empathy, compassion and altruism. It means exploring what we need to learn, say and do in order to play our part and be a catalyst for change. It means embracing courage to face the naysayers who believe nothing will change, with a conviction that things must change. It means making decisions that are right for everyone involved, even when they may not be the most convenient for ourselves.
As Khiree said, we must recognize that the road to utopia is not utopian. It's about accepting that to travel in the direction we need to go, it won't always be holding hands, kumbaya and fuzzy feelings. There are things we are going to have to fight. Sometimes the fight is going to be within your heart. Sometimes the fight is going to be in Capitol Hill or in the boardroom. But there will be struggle, so in order to build a community capable of fighting substance abuse, it's important we recognize it and take it on.

Love in action relates to CASA's mission of Prevention Through Connection. We are all pieces of a puzzle: parents, students, teachers, coaches, neighbors, churches, and schools, and this year we need to take on love in action in big ways. In September, CASA wraps up our 10th and final year as a Drug Free Communities (DFC) grant recipient, ending significant funding of CASA's programming in the community. 

We are now looking for partners, catalysts and decision makers who are committed to continuing the process of creating a community that inspires and supports our children and youth to live full, healthy, abundant lives. CASA is here to work with you, but we can't do it alone. As Khiree (and Mahatma Gandhi) remind us, we all need to be the change we want to see in this world.
Lesley Mazzotta
Project Director

Do you want to get more involved in CASA? Are you a member? Have you joined our SAFE Homes network? To register,  click here  and learn more about this important initiative that seeks to help our tweens and teens stay safe.

A message from Lauren Sadeh
10th Grade Health Teacher

Today's adolescents have access to more information than ever before, and are inundated with often contradictory messages about healthy relationships. They're accustomed to sifting through these messages to consider what is relevant to them, and parents and caregivers are valuable to supporting them in this challenge.  

The 10th grade health classes are currently diving into the topic of how a healthy relationship may become unhealthy and escalate into a potentially dangerous situation.  Students are identifying the warning signs of abusive relationships and what to do if they think a friend or they themselves may be in one.  This unit culminates with the viewing and analysis of  Escalation, a film created by the OneLove Foundation after the tragic death of the UVA lacrosse player, Yeardley Love. To learn more about OneLove and the film, click here.
Upcoming Programs and Events
Parents are invited to our next CASA Coffee on Tuesday, March 6 at 9:30am - 11:00am  in the home of a local Manhasset parent. 

Join friends and neighbors as we strengthen parent networking to guide our teens toward making healthy choices. To register, CLICK HERE. 

Nassau County POLICE Update on DRUGS in the Community 
In Your Face Unseen
Tuesday, March 6, 7pm - 9pm
To register,  CLICK HERE.

All Students, Faculty and Parents are welcome! 
Gian Paul Gonzalez, ALL IN
Monday, March 12, 6pm - 7pm
To register,  CLICK HERE.

Yoga Fundraiser for CASA
Thursday, March 22
12:45pm - 2:45pm

Yoga Life
939 Port Washington Blvd
parking in back) 

Join us for an afternoon of yoga and body care in support of CASA. 

1:00pm - 2:00pm:  Creative Vinyasa Flow yoga class with Joanne Kane (for all levels including beginner.) 

2:00pm - 2:45pm: Refreshments and demo by Jeanine Toes of  Emma's Elixirs, a new all natural  body care company created with her 9th grade daughter. 

Raffle tickets for sale to win fun prizes!

All proceeds go to continuing CASA's programs 
supporting youth mental and physical health.

Please RSVP to Patti Anne Reilly at:  
Upcoming Programs for Middle & High School Students

All High School Students

Join CASA at The Long Island Teen Institute 
Leadership Conference
March 16-18, 2018 
Camp Quinipet on Shelter Island

We will join high school students from all over Long Island to:
  • Build and strengthen our individual leadership skills 
  • Participate in meaningful discussion about the issues affecting teens today (stress, anxiety, relationships)
  • Connect with peers from all over Long Island who are making healthy choices and are positively affecting change their communities
  • Meet inspiring speakers who are experts in their fields
  • Learn evidence-based strategies for developing action plans and becoming agents of change in our communities
    Learn about current trends in alcohol and other drug use (including prescription opiates and heroin)

This three night/four day conference costs $150 per participant.  It includes rooming, meals, supplies, and training.  

For more information or to register, 
contact the CASA office: 516-267-7548 or       
Girl Empowerment Days on Broadway
March 24: Come From Away
April 21: Mean Girls
Members Make A Coalition
Join or Renew your CASA Annual Membership

Manhasset CASA is in its 10th year of the Drug Free Communities Sup port  Program Grant. We need your membership to continue our efforts!  Please join or renew your 2017-18 membership as we are all  responsible to keep Manhasset's children safe and healthy! 

We greatly appreciate your support and hope you will  Like Us on Facebook or visit our website a   to learn more about teen and college trends in risk behavior as well as parenting! 

Manhasset Community 

Coalition Against Substance Abuse (CASA), Inc. 

P.O. Box 392
Manhasset, NY 11030
(516) 267-7548

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Manhasset CASA exists as a resource to reduce the illegal, underage use of alcohol, tobacco, & other drugs among its youth, before they are in trouble, by
connecting parents, schools and the community as partners in the common goal. In 2013, CASA was honored to receive its second five year Drug Free
Communities Support Grant (DFC) by the Office of National Drug Control Policy  (ONDCP).  Our goals are to reduce substance abuse among youth and, over time, among adults; and to establish and strengthen collaboration among communities, private nonprofit agencies, and federal, state, and local governments to support the efforts of our community coalition to prevent and reduce substance abuse among  youth.