**Drug-Free Communities Grants Will Provide $125K each to 12 local drug prevention coalitions across New Hampshire**
(Washington, DC) – Today, U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) announced $1.875 million in Drug-Free Communities (DFC) grants from the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) to 12 local drug prevention coalitions in New Hampshire. The grants will provide local community coalitions funding to prevent youth substance use, including prescription drugs and opioids, in Nashua, Souhegan Valley, Merrimack, Raymond, Kingston, Somersworth, Franklin, Keene, Lebanon, Winchester, Littleton, and Jaffrey.
“Educating our children about substance use prevention is a key component to combating the opioid epidemic,” said Shaheen. “I am pleased to announce these grants which will help local communities with youth drug prevention efforts throughout the state. Substance use disorders can start at an early age, and these programs have demonstrated success with middle school and high school youth. Turning the tide of the opioid crisis will take a multi-faceted effort, and empowering local prevention efforts is critical in this fight. My primary focus in Congress is to advocate for federal resources to combat this epidemic, and I will continue to work across the aisle to deliver resources to help end this crisis.”
“The fentanyl, heroin, and opioid crisis is devastating communities across our state and impacting Granite Staters from all walks of life, including our young people,” said Hassan. “This federal grant will provide local, community-level support throughout the state to help prevent our young people from misusing harmful substances and developing life-threatening addictions. In addition to strengthening prevention efforts across New Hampshire, I’ll keep working across the aisle to ensure that those on the front lines of this crisis working in treatment, recovery, and the law enforcement community have the support they need to turn the tide of this epidemic to help save lives.”
DFC coalitions have led innovative opioid prevention initiatives and have demonstrated significant declines in prevalence of prescription drug misuse amongst participants.
The DFC Program is administered by ONDCP with program support from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The Fiscal Year 2018 grants include new grants of $125,000 to Nashua Prevention Coalition in Nashua and Community Action for Safe Teens in Souhegan Valley, as well as continuation grants of $125,000 to Merrimack Safeguard in Merrimack, Raymond Coalition for Youth, Inc. in Raymond, Southern Rockingham Coalition of Youth Prevention of Marijuana and Prescription Drug Abuse Project in Kingston, Somersworth Prevention Coalition in Somersworth, Franklin Mayor’s Drug and Alcohol Abuse Task Force in Franklin, Monadnock Alcohol and Drug Abuse Coalition in Keene, All Together, Inc. in Lebanon, Winchester We’ve Got Your Back in Winchester, Haverhill Area Substance Misuse Prevention Coalition in Littleton, and Reality Check Now, Inc. in Jaffrey.
Senator Shaheen, a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee and the lead Democrat of the Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies Subcommittee, has consistently advocated for the DFC program and with Senator Hassan has led efforts in Congress to respond to the opioid crisis. As a result of the advocacy of Senators Shaheen and Hassan on the bipartisan Common Sense Caucus and their engagement during the writing of the funding bill that was recently signed into law, the Senators helped secure the $3.3 billion in additional resources. This funding will go towards a number of key programs through the Department of Health and Human Services for treatment and prevention, the Department of Justice for law enforcement and grant resources, and other federal agencies to help communities impacted by the opioid epidemic. Both Senators were instrumental in securing the $142 million set-aside in the government funding bill for opioid response efforts that will target hardest-hit states like New Hampshire. As a result of these efforts, New Hampshire recently received a more than seven-fold increase in annual grant award funding provided through the State Opioid Response Grant program.