Volume 01 | April 1, 2020
Your Weekly News & Updates
Hello colleagues, committee members, volunteers, and friends!

We hope this newsletter finds you and your family well. The coronavirus and COVID-19 disease has dramatically changed everyone's lives. Our staff have been working remotely since March 16th. We are thankful for our good health and that of our families. Our hearts go out to those who are suffering during this difficult time and we thank our healthcare workers who risk their safety for the sake of caring for others.

Much of our work revolves around being personally connected to all of you and to those we serve in the 43 towns within region 5. We hope this weekly update will help to keep us all connected- with news and resources to share. We will be sending one out every Wednesday. We welcome any feedback.

Be well and stay safe.
Regional Opioid Workgroup

Prescription Drug Safety Program for Teens
Our Access Western CT Coalition Newsletter this month focuses on the Ever-Fi Prescription Drug Safety program for high school students. Thanks to many partners including members of our Drug Free Schools Committee, the program was implemented across our service area. To read more, click on the image to the right.
Drug Free Schools Committee
The Social Workers and Counselors from our area schools are busy servicing students and families remotely.

The Educator , a publication of the Drug Free Schools Committee, features the topic of "Marijuana Risks to Youth". It will be distributed to families through school channels this week. Click on the image to the left to read the latest edition.
Mental Health Wellness
The Catchment Area Councils (CACs) in Region 5 were not able to hold regularly scheduled March meetings, but plans are in the works for videoconferencing and conference calls to get back together in April.

CAC 21 had to postpone a presentation on the Impact of Social Media and Technology on Mental Health , which was being brought to us by Liz Jorgensen, CADC, Director of Insight Counseling. Hopefully, we can reschedule this presentation when the pandemic safeguards are not as restrictive. CAC 21 will be holding the April 23rd meeting remotely; the agenda includes planning for the distribution of fact sheets in our communities during the month of May. All interested parties from the CAC 21 area (Greater Danbury) are welcome to attend this meeting. If you would like to be included and think you may not be on the roster, please email Allison at afulton@wctcoalition.org .

We look forward to seeing everyone in person very soon!
Region 5 Suicide Advisory Board
We are living in a time of uncertainty that can cause stress and anxiety for many of us. The Region 5 Suicide Advisory Board encourages everyone to take the time to care for themselves and reach out for help if you need it. Below are some resources we hope will help everyone get through these difficult times.
Taking Care of Your Mental Health in the Face of Uncertainty - An article from the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
Gizmo's Pawesome Guide to Mental Health is a great free resource to help you and your kids with your sad, mad and worried feelings during this tough time. And, this link has fun activities you and your kids can do alone or together inside and outside: https://www.gizmo4mentalhealth.org/forkids/

The online book is available in English and Spanish .
Local Prevention Council Update

Despite the challenges created by social distancing, our 26 Local Prevention Councils have been staying connected. Although most of them were forced to cancel monthly meetings and other planned programs during March, they are still staying in touch with each other and with our staff. 

Many LPCs are using video-conferencing (ZOOM, Webex, Gotomeeting, etc) for their monthly meetings in April and we support this whole-heartedly! Please contact one of us if you need help accessing this technology. Also, don’t forget to include us in your meetings! 
We are sad that it is looks like we will be postponing Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America national trainer, Teresa Bishop, who was set to run our LPC Leadership Meeting scheduled for 5/19/20. We will get back to you with new plans for that date and a raincheck on Teresa’s fantastic training. 

We also expect to know more about Narcan Distribution for SOR grantees, revisions to your LPC FY20 budget plans and other important info by mid-April. We all appreciate your patience!

We sincerely appreciate the continued outreach to key informants and community members who have completed the Community Readiness Survey for CT DMHAS. THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO SHARED IT WITH YOUR NETWORKS!!
Please reach out to us if you need anything –
Problem Gambling Awareness
We were sorry to cancel our Problem Gambling Awareness Month Luncheon last month. Stay tuned for a reschedule.

Click on the image to the left to read our info-brief with information and resources.

Our Partners: (logos link to web pages)