New virtual website highlights substance abuse, mental health services | Local

Alonzo Osche

MONTICELLO — A new website is debuting Monday that puts the spotlight directly on substance abuse prevention and mental health awareness services.

The website — www.whitecountycares.org — promotes the goals of National Prevention Week, an annual health observance dedicated to increasing public awareness and action around substance abuse prevention and the promotion of positive mental health.

This year, the national initiative is sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). It will be May 9-15.

Daily health themes are: Preventing Prescription Drug and Opioid Abuse (May 10), Preventing Underage Drinking and Alcohol Misuse (May 11), Preventing Illicit Drug Use and Youth Marijuana Use (May 12), Preventing Youth Tobacco, e-cigarette and vape use (May 13), and Preventing Suicide (May 14).

The partners that comprise the United Council on Opioids, including Indiana University Health, Phoenix QRT, Healthy Communities of Clinton County, and White County United Way in cooperation with White County government have created an interactive virtual experience tailored to one’s role in the community. Whether you’re a town leader, community member, parent, student or school leader, people can become a “Community Cares Champion” by completing three guided modules to learn more about preventing substance misuse.

The modules differ based on the selection (town leader, community member, school leader, etc.) made on the main home page.

Each module takes people through facts, videos, links, and graphics to help people gain an understanding what substance misuse means and how help prevent it. There are links to aid in learning more about substance misuse and mental health issues, as well as links about how one can take action to help someone in need.

Complete all three modules and quizzes to earn a Community Cares Champion certificate, which may be printed with the participant’s name and includes coupons redeemable at select White County vendors.

The website also contains links to local resources, find out if one is addicted or in need of recovery help.

The website project was supported by a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

For more information, to request promotional materials, or to get more involved in county-wide prevention initiatives, contact Kiera Lewellyn, director of the United Council on Opioids, at 574-583-6544, ext. 5, or [email protected]

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