The Rhode Island Regional Coalitions is made up of people dedicated to making the State a healthier and safer place to live – through education, partnerships, and collaborations. While there are many ways to improve the health and safety of Rhode Island, the Coalitions focus on the prevention of substance use and underage drinking – while promoting good mental health and well-being in all our communities.
Attend Coalition events. We bring experts in the fields of adolescent development, addiction and prevention to inform and mobilize the community to focus on the dangers kids face and how we, as a community, can reduce those risks they face every day.
Boost Protective Factors. Evidence-based prevention programs show that we can create an environment that protects kids from alcohol and substance abuse. Effective parenting, eating meals together, building self-esteem, extracurricular school programs, faith-based youth programs and community-sponsored youth programs are all proven to help "protect" kids from alcohol and substance abuse. The more wholesome, supervised activities kids have to choose from, the less likely they are to become victims of alcohol and substance use.
Talk to kids about alcohol and drugs. And the earlier you start talking, the better! According to DrugFree.org, of those teens who reported alcohol use, a majority (62 percent) said they had their first full alcoholic drink by age 15, not including sipping or tasting alcohol. Of those teens who reported alcohol use, one in four (25 percent), said they drank a full alcoholic drink for the first time by age 12 or younger. Talk early. Talk often. It's great prevention.
Become an active Coalition member. If you would like to be an active member of the coalition at the regional or community level, we can always use more hands and experience to expand our capacity in our prevention efforts. If interested, please e-mail your local coalition and they can let you know about opportunities to serve.