SAFE’s mission is to engage our community in working together to prevent substance abuse.
- Develops community partnerships, expanding substance abuse prevention efforts to all sectors of the community.
- Advocates for laws and policies that reduce substance abuse and for funding for initiatives that have been proven effective in curbing substance abuse.
- Increases awareness of substance abuse issues and works to strengthen community norms that support substance abuse-free living.
- Involves youth in leadership roles to influence their peers, adults and community leaders about the value of substance abuse free living.
The coalition focuses on community-wide initiatives to prevent substance abuse rather than on programs or activities that target individuals or small groups. Some of SAFE’s major activities have included:
- SAFE Youth Coalition: Members are high school volunteers who represent Chesterfield County and SAFE in educating themselves and others in preventing substance abuse, and participate in social media creations and compliance checks.
- Teen Leadership: SAFE helps develop teen leaders. Teens participate as buyers for
underage compliance checks.
- Use, You Lose: A campaign reaching children from kindergarten through grade 12 and their parents, Use, You Lose stresses consequences of substance abuse.
Underage Drinking Prevention: Alcohol use is the most pervasive problem among the greatest number of Chesterfield youths. SAFE’s prevention efforts have included:
– teach-ins by the chief of police
– radio ads recorded by teens
– ongoing compliance checks
– partnerships with complying alcohol retailers
– promoting safe and sober high school graduations.
Student Stay SMART assembly
- Prescription Drugs: The abuse of prescription drugs and over the counter medications is an increasing problem among Chesterfield youths. The past 30-day use of prescription narcotics by Chesterfield high school seniors was 70 percent higher than the national average. Have you talked to your children about prescription drug abuse?
- Tobacco: Prevention is key. Teens who don’t smoke before age 18 are unlikely to ever develop the habit.