Binghamton, NY – Deputy Broome County Executive John Bernardo joined Broome County Legislators Kelly Wildoner and Ron Heebner, Commissioner of Social Services Art Johnson, Broome Opioid Abuse Council Coordinator Carole Cassidy and local school superintendents to announce the County has received a $625,000 grant to work with schools and community to reduce the drug and alcohol abuse.
Coordinated Care Services Incorporated, on behalf of the Broome Opioid Abuse Council, was awarded a grant for $125,000 annually for 5 years through the Drug Free Communities Support Program.
The County can reapply for an additional 5 years.
“We want to thank the federal government for recognizing there is an addiction problem not only in Broome County, but nationwide,” says Deputy Broome County Executive John Bernardo. “Any money we receive to provide more programming and treatment is welcomed and a benefit for our community.”
"A strong partnership with our schools is critical to our fight against heroin in our community," says Broome County Legislator Kelly Wildoner. "Prevention education involving students, parents, faculty and staff is a key component of our efforts and this grant will go a long way in supporting those programs."
“Since December 2014, the Broome Opioid Abuse Council has worked tirelessly to develop solutions to the increase in prescription drug and heroin abuse in our community and being awarded this grant is evidence of that hard work,” says BOAC Coordinator Carole Cassidy. “The federal funding will enhance the efforts already being undertaken by BOAC and its community partners.”
The goals of the grant money will strengthen BOAC’s focus on youth substance abuse issues by broadening partnerships with local youth serving organizations to increase participation and effect change in community norms.
It’ll also increase community awareness programs concerned with drugs and consequences of drug use including addressing binge drinking and the recreational use of marijuana.
BOAC will continue to collaborate with Broome County schools and its local partners to offer events that promote prevention education and community connectedness by involving school faculty and staff in community conversations.
"As a school we appreciate the continued partnership with Broome County,” says Susquehanna Valley Superintendent Roland Doig. “This partnership allows us to continue efforts to educate students, parents and communities about substance abuse from alcohol to the opioid epidemic. We have used data from the PNA survey to target our efforts in schools, and to host Community Informational Nights to educate our communities about the dangers of the opioid epidemic. We believe that education is a major tool in combating substance abuse, and we thank Broome County for keeping us involved in the process."
The money will also be used to increase family engagement to support parents’ roles in drug awareness and prevention by fostering development of Parent Café’s in school districts, enhancing school partnerships to promote collaboration in addressing youth substance abuse and getting school faculty and staff involved in community conversations.
And it will help fund efforts that promote prevention education and reduce the number of opioid associated deaths in our community.