507-455-1180 110 N. Cedar Ave. | Owatonna, MN 55060

Steele County Safe & Drug Free Coalition Initiatives

Take It to the Box

Take It to the Box

Steele County “Take It to the Box” Campaign. Currently, there are two collection boxes, located in the Law Enforcement Center lobby on 204 E Pearl Street, Owatonna and at the Blooming Prairie City Hall 138 Hwy Ave S, Blooming Prairie. These boxes are available to dispose of unwanted medications.

Drugs Collected

The Take It to the Box program has collected 5,000 pounds of prescription drugs in Steele County since 2011.

  • 2011 = 690 lbs.
  • 2012 = 733 lbs.
  • 2013 = 747 lbs.
  • 2014 = 637 lbs.
  • 2015 = 988 lbs.
  • 2016 = 1,205 lbs.
  • 2017 = Still collecting

Steele County Safe & Drug Free Coalition strongly encourages citizens to be proactive about keeping prescription medications out of the wrong hands.

Parents Who Host, Lose the Most

Parents Who HostParents Who Host, Lose the Most: Don’t Be a Party to Teenage Drinking educates parents about the health and safety risks of providing alcohol to teenagers and increases awareness of underage drinking laws.

High school prom, graduation parties, and summer vacation correlate with an increase in alcohol accessibility as underage drinking parties become more prevalent.

During this time of year (April – June), our goal as a coalition is to help educate parents and students about the risks, legal consequences, local social host ordinance, liability, and financial implications associated with providing alcohol to minors. We also want to promote to healthy choices.

With the help of high school students and coalition volunteers, we hope to partner with local liquor establishments through a media and sticker campaign, which will result in placing a sticker on countless cases of beer to remind young adults and parents not to supply alcohol to minors, because an individual can face up to $1,000 in fines or up to 90 days in jail. Don’t Buy or Supply.

Red Ribbon Week

Red Ribbon Week

October 23–31, 2017

Our coalition supports a week of activities in our local schools and community to raise awareness and provide drug prevention education.

The National Red Ribbon Campaign is the oldest and largest drug prevention program in the nation reaching millions of young people.

Our Community Outreach Committee and Youth Advisory Board have started the planning process for several fun activities this fall. More details to be announced closer to the date. Please contact us, if you’re interested in volunteering for Red Ribbon Week.

Know the Truth

November 15, 2017

Know the Truth is the Substance Abuse Prevention program of Mn Adult & Teen Challenge. Our community is fortunate to have the opportunity to partner with this organization. Know the Truth speaks in over 160 High Schools and Middle Schools in Minnesota about the risks of using and abusing drugs and alcohol. They use a peer to peer format with our students, sharing personal stories of addiction. They also understand the importance of a multipronged approach to prevention, and the importance of also educating parents, teachers and community members. They have hosted forums in several counties throughout Minnesota. The focus of this forum is education and awareness, we want to prevent families from having to suffer through a painful addiction. Parents are offered tips on how to stay connected to their teen, what signs and symptoms to look for and what to do if they need help.

Mark your calendars for November 15, 2017 6:00pm at the Owatonna High School auditorium.

Photo Voice

Start a conversation, the Safe & Drug Free Coalition wants to gain perspective on the lifestyle and culture of youth through photography. It’s also a great way to start a conversation with a young person about positive life choices.

The topics we will be exploring

  • What leads to alcohol and substance use among youth in Steele County?
  • What prevents youth from using alcohol & substances in Steele County?

photo voiceTake a walk, bring a camera/phone and start a conversation.

Please share an image and short story with us at: safedrugfree@unitedwaysteelecounty.org

Your Photo Voice may be featured on our website and Facebook page to help spark interest and raise awareness that will lead to positive change in our community. There is no deadline, it’s an on-going activity. Your participation is greatly appreciated.

Safe & Drug Free Scholarship

scholarshipThe Steele County Safe & Drug Free Coalition is excited to be offering a scholarship opportunity for a local student in spring of 2018. Applications will be available in March 2018. In the meantime, if you would like to help support our scholarship fund, please stop by the Cashwise Food Stand in Owatonna on August 2 -3, 11:00 am – 6:00 pm proceeds will go towards helping a student achieve their educational goals.

Prevention Curriculum – Project Northland

Project Northland is a highly engaging and effective evidence-based alcohol-use prevention program that has earned national recognition. Key to the program’s success is that Project Northland is designed to address both intrapersonal influences and environmental influences in multiple domains. Project Northland focuses specifically on alcohol use, yet the program has also been shown to reduce tobacco and marijuana use.

Program Goals

  • Delay the age when young people begin drinking.
  • Reduce alcohol use among young people who have already tried drinking.
  • Limit the number of alcohol-related problems of young people.

Objective: Implementation of consistent prevention education throughout Steele County middle schools.

Life of an Athlete

life-of-athleteLife of an Athlete leads to changes in the school climate and behaviors among the student body. Program activities include supporting healthy lifestyle choices that encourage positive behavior among the athletic community; youth leadership training to develop team unity; and student athlete, coach, parent, and community education on the impact of lifestyle choices and how to make healthier ones. All of these activities are designed to support student behavior changes which focus on proper nutrition, adequate sleep and abstinence from substance use. Life of an Athlete partners with the Steele County Safe and Drug Free Coalition to reduce rates of substance abuse among students and increase positive lifestyle choices.

Click here for more info: Life of an Athlete – Owatonna

Tobacco Free Parks

tobacco free parksOur goal as a coalition is to educate our community on the importance of Tobacco-Free Park and Recreation areas for our youth. Exposure to secondhand smoke has immediate health consequences on the cardiovascular and respiratory systems and even in an outdoor setting imposes a risk. Discarded cigarettes and chewing tobacco may be ingested by toddlers. Tobacco-free environments promote positive community role modeling and protect the health, safety and welfare of community members. Nearly 100 Minnesota cities and counties have adopted tobacco-free policies for their outdoor recreation facilities and park areas. Help Steele County lead the way!

If you’re interested in more information of ways to get involved, please contact us.

Talk. They Hear You.

Talk They Hear YouThe “Talk. They Hear You.” Underage Drinking Prevention National Media Campaign empowers parents and caregivers to talk with children early about alcohol.

The campaign aims to: Increase parents’ awareness of the prevalence and risk of underage drinking, equip parents with the knowledge, skills, and confidence to prevent underage drinking and increase parents’ actions to prevent underage drinking. Research shows that parents are the leading influence on their child’s decisions about alcohol. Although it may not seem like it, when parents talk about underage drinking, their children do hear them.

Most of Us

most-of-us“Most of Us” is a social norms campaign intended to inform students about the true levels of alcohol consumption among their peers. The actual levels of alcohol consumption among students are much lower than students perceive them to be as demonstrated in the graph below. The perception of Steele County 8th graders is that 74% of their peers have tried alcohol, but in reality only 17% have.

Changes in perceptions of drinking norms leads to fewer students engaging in high-risk drinking behavior and relieve feelings of peer-pressure.

Through social media, newspaper ads, posters, radio and being present within the schools and community to educate students on the positive statistics, “everyone is NOT doing it.”

Steele County Safe and Drug Free Coalition |
110 N. Cedar Ave.| Owatonna, MN 55060
| 507-455-1180 | contact@steelecountysafeanddrugfree.com