2nd annual jefferson county 2017 super bowl party
By Jacob Rasch, senior at Jefferson HS and junior member of the Jefferson County DUI Task Force
This past Super Bowl Sunday, the Jefferson County DUI Task Force, Jefferson County Tobacco Prevention, Jefferson County, Mariah's Challenge and the CARE Coalition hosted the second annual Super Bowl party at Jefferson High School. With the total attendance of 55 teens and 16 adults, the party was teeming with fun and excitement. Prizes, such as televisions, Xbox Ones, Drones, Gift certificates and much more, were given away to the students who attended. There were also an abundance of fun activities to do.
The DUI Task Force brought many board games, set up Minute-To- Win-It activities, and the National Guard brought an inflatable jousting arena! The teens loved the activities presented, enjoyed spending time with their friends, and watched an historic Super Bowl. The purpose of the party was to show teens that they don’t need alcohol or other substances to have a good time and that goal was greatly achieved! The organizers would like to thank all those who participated in making the party possible, the donors of the incredible prizes, Sgt. Chance McDowell and the National Guard, and all those who came and participated in this exciting event!
With special thanks to Barb Reiter, Block Grant Prevention Specialist for Jefferson County.
Pondera county sticker shock campaign
The 2016 Montana Prevention Needs Assessment survey revealed that 71.7% of Pondera students who drank alcohol reported getting it from “someone I know age 21 or older.” This startling statistic led us to the conclusion that a sticker shock campaign was essential for Pondera County. To get the ball rolling, I asked three eager 8th graders to join me for some first-hand experience by collaborating with the Great Falls Alliance for Youth group. The Conrad and Great Falls kids “stickered” alcoholic products in several Great Falls area businesses. The stickers contained a message warning buyers “it is illegal to provide alcohol to a person under the age of 21.” My prevention team of three then agreed to help me with our own campaign in Pondera County.
Soon thereafter in January, I went to the Pondera County DUI Task Force meeting to solicit ideas and support. We came up with a list of places to target in Valier and Conrad. We decided to place the logos of our sponsors on the sticker. I worked with Walker Design in Great Falls to create our sticker. We were now ready to target both rural towns prior to their local spring proms. In preparation, I provided and required signed permission slips for the kids, asked for funding to provide meals for the youth and personally visited each business to ask permission to sticker their products. The positive response and wide- reaching support made the job gratifying.
The local sheriff gave kudos on his morning radio report to the participating businesses. The Valier event was coupled with the Shop with a Cop fundraiser basketball game. I asked my group leader, Paige Bender, o summarize the best and worst parts of the event. Here’s her quote: “Best part was having fun and worst part was trying to find a place to stick the sticker.” We placed about 600 stickers on items in the two areas. With our new found expertise, we are ready for the next round! - Diana Agre, PFS PS for Pondera County
Prevention Specialist in Focus – Dean Doney of the Fort Belknap Reservation
Dean Doney is the Partnership for Success Prevention Specialist, who works for the Chemical Dependency Clinic on the Fort Belknap Reservation. Fort Belknap is home to the Gros Ventre and Assiniboine Tribes. Towns like Hays, Lodgepole and Fort Belknap Agency have very unique characteristics and differing cultural traditions and affiliations. Dean enlists varying approaches, considerations and tact with each community.
One of Dean’s priorities was to revitalize the Prevention Center since he identified that kids needed a place to go to for activities, for cultural enrichment and to learn resiliency. All four area schools have youth coalitions that provide Dean with input. He heard again and again that pressure from peers was a big problem that leads to early initiation into drinking and drugging on the reservation.
In late January, the Prevention Center had its highest number of participants to date. They offer three different programs on designated nights. There’s a language class that teaches Nakoda for Assiniboine and Aaniiih for the Gros Ventre. There’s a drum class connecting youth with that longstanding, proud tradition. The third is a native crafts class that the cultural coordinator facilitates.
The center offers tutoring including enabling the kids to work on their communication skills and how to overcome barriers. The Prevention Center is open for the kids to hang out and play games, sports or just be a safe place with adults that will listen. Planning a career workshop is on Dean’s radar. He’d like to have the kids hear from representatives in the education, public and private sectors to help them broaden their horizons and think about their futures.
At a recent Tribal Action Plan (TAP) Committee meeting, Dean promoted the positive things his youth center is providing in keeping with a culture that values strengths. He’s committed to letting everyone in the community know “we’re here and this is what we do.” He’s working to bridge the silos and overcome sometimes territorial walls.
In Conrad, Montana
CONRAD Coffee with a Cop
Spring 2016: Barbara Bessette (Gateway Community Services Prevention Supervisor) invited me to experience Coffee with a Cop in Great Falls to see if I might be interested in bringing this program to Conrad. I was quite impressed with the positive and friendly atmosphere. I chatted with the events coordinator and she gave me a few helpful hints. The groundwork was laid.
Summer 2016: A young group of high school students were interested in attending a leadership camp in Helena for a quick lesson in becoming influential in their respective roles. Off we went to Hele-na’s Camp Child for 2 event filled days. In a group break-out session students discussed ideas that could work in our community. I suggested they host Coffee with a Cop. The response was unanimous and that set the wheels in motion.
Fall 2016: YAT PaC (Youth Advisory Team for Positive Choice/Change) met and ironed out some of the necessary details. After some good old fashioned brainstorming and collaboration, they decided upon the venue, which agencies to invite and set about creating the invitations. We let the public know when it was taking place. On the appointed day, YAT Pac members would be present to greet them with a smile, suggest possible topics of interest and honor their local officers by purchasing their coffee. The local paper was there for a photo op of community policing in action in Conrad.
October 20,2016: VOILA! COFFEE WITH A COP… BIG SUCCESS!