Rockville Centre, NY - September 10, 2015 - U.S. Representative Kathleen Rice announced today that the Rockville Centre Coalition for Youth has been awarded a $124,999 federal grant to support efforts to prevent youth substance use. The grant was awarded through the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy’s Drug-Free Communities (DFC) Support Program, which provides funding to support local, community-based efforts to reduce youth substance use. The DFC Support Program is a matching federal grant, where each community provides a minimum of one-to-one match in local funding for each federal dollar awarded. The Rockville Centre Coalition for Youth’s goal is to establish and strengthen community collaboration in support of local efforts to prevent youth substance use. The coalition will use this funding to achieve that goal by increasing its active membership, implementing community engagement and social marketing campaigns to raise awareness about the risks of marijuana use, empowering teens and parents with the skills to prevent alcohol and marijuana use, and reducing access to marijuana through enforcement and policy changes.
“The most effective efforts to prevent alcohol and drug use among young people happen on the ground in our communities, and supporting those efforts is the best investment our government can make,” said Representative Kathleen Rice. “This federal funding will allow the Rockville Centre Coalition for Youth to continue building a strong grassroots movement that will empower kids with the knowledge and support they need to make smart, healthy choices. I’m very pleased that the coalition secured this funding, and I will support their efforts in any way that I can.”
“What is so exciting about this recognition,” said Jeanne Farnan Mulry, pro bono General Counsel for the RVC Youth Council, Inc., who filed the grant on behalf of the Coalition, “is that so many community groups have been working together for so long trying to eliminate the environmental causes that tempt our underage youth to use alcohol or drugs. This Drug Free Communities grant will help strengthen our bond, and support the work that is already in place.”
Ms. Mulry cited the work of the school district’s Drug and Alcohol Task Force, the RVC Youth Council, the RVC Police Department, Confide Counseling, the PTA, the Herald newspaper, and a host of religious, community and civic groups who have supported this cause, and who are members of the Rockville Centre Coalition for Youth.
“At the RVC Youth Council, we are especially pleased that our model of youth empowerment is so strong a factor in the DFC grant funding for the Coalition. We structured our non-profit so that our local teens have real authority, and are the elected officers of the RVC Youth Council. And we are especially pleased that our two most recent co-Presidents, Alexandra Kosakoff and Juliana Shenker, who are seniors at South Side High School, will be the Youth Sector representatives for the Rockville Centre Coalition for Youth. They will have a seat at the table with our other community leaders.” said Mulry.