Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Al-Anon / Alateen

"I felt victimized by the alcoholics I lived with while growing up, and I carried that attitude into my adult life. I took pains to appear mature, successful, grown up and in charge. Inside, however, I felt like a scared little kid who was completely out of control. I continued to feel and act like a perpetual victim -- fearful, reactive, and unable to cope. My fear became even more intense when I learned that my son was an alcoholic. Fortunately when he sought recovery, I found Al-Anon.

In Al-Anon I learned that I have choices. I don't need to be a helpless, hopeless victim. Instead, I can take responsibility for myself each moment through the choices I make. I can attend a meeting, call someone in the program, ask for guidance, pray, and work my program.

It isn't always easy. Sometimes I need to ask God to grant me courage to ask for help rather than to wallow in self-pity and fear. I can ask myself what I need and then do whatever is necessary to get my needs met. I don't have to worry about what everyone else is doing; they have their own Higher Power who cares for them. I can ask for courage to change the things I can and for serenity to accept the things I can't. Reminding myself that I always have choices gives me hope and courage to leave fear and passivity behind. i am always held in the care of my Higher Power, who gives me security and inspiration to act boldly by changing the one thing I can -- myself." -- Hope For Today

Please visit for more information.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Fall Meeting Notes 2009

Stephanie Willis, CHCCS, spoke about the results of the Youth Risk Behavior Survey. The results were gathered using a different platform or on-line version, therefore, an exact comparison with the old results would be invalid. However, because of "Social Norming" efforts most teens are "NOT doing it". She was glad to see the "Talk it up, Lock it up" campaign getting underway and more attention. The YRBS and CHHS local survey results show that most kids are getting their alcohol and drugs from within their own homes. The "Talk it up, Lock it up" program asks parents to take active measures to deny access to alcohol and drugs. "Positive Behavior Support" gets the message out that kids are not using as part of Social Norming. Also mentioned was how helpful forums like the 5th Annual PTSA Parent Forum: Should We Drink With Our Kids?. Stephanie Willis then introduced Stephanie Mozokewen(sp?) who spoke about the prevention programs in both the High School and the Middle Schools, Susbstance Abuse Prevention and usage perceptions. The Safe-Homes network will be adding the Middle Schools in order to get more Parents to make "The Pledge". CHPD, local business and organizations teamed up to keep drugs and alcohol locked up. They collected 36lbs of pills and 40lbs of liquid. Also, "Operation: Medicine Cabinet". The CADFT hopes Parents will work with Lowe's, or other home improvement centers, to find more creative ways to secure drugs and alcohol in their homes. Questions were fielded about how to better advertise or market the "Talk it up, Lock it up". Also, using Sentury Safe was suggested.

Chapel Hill Police Lt. Pat Burns reported that the Alcohol Response Team now has 26 trained officers. The response team consists of officers from both Chapel Hill and Carrboro Police Departments who are specially trained. They patrolled all of the UNC football games to enforce the Open Container Law. Meetings were held in Aug and Oct with all local departments, including Campus police, to review compliance's and monitoring (e.g. keg control, issuing violations and recurring situations). Another officer training is expected in Jan. He spoke about the ALERT Team and their success. THERE IS AN ANONYMOUS TIPLINE for citizens who want to express their concerns and/or report situations.

The Carpe Diem Group from UNC was represented by Dean Blackburn, Assistant Dean of Students, Community Relations. He talked about the surveys for incoming students and the wrong perception of UNC being a party school. He explained that there is an increase in the alcohol use in Chapel Hill, however, it seems to follow a trend that fluctuates every 4 to 5 years. He discussed some of the results as to: Where do the students think the alcohol is? Sororities and Fraternities. Where do they get alcohol? Off-campus locations. Read more on the Alchohol education classes here. Dean thanked the officers and other resources for their involvement.
Eric Smith from Campus Health Services talked about the success of the Alcohol Education and Assessment Sessions.
Jenny Levering, Assistant Dean of Students, Fraternity & Sorority Life spoke about the students giving positive feedback on the Environmental Management Approach, Guiding Principles / Philosophy and Long Term Goals and Objectives of the Counseling and Wellness Services. More information on alcohol is located on Student Legal Services website.

At this juncture, Dale brought up the ad in the Daily Tar Heel about a Beer Pong Fund Raiser for Higher Education. This was deemed a faux pas, and was indeed in need of a Call to Action. Please advocate for no fund raising in bars by writing to Legislators or the Chancellor at UNC.

Judy Dingfelder from the Orange County ABC Board, spoke about there being less funds for Education and Training. Groups in need
will need to come forward to ask for Grants. The ABC Board is involved in Training ALE, detecting False I.D.'s using scanners and has a Zero Tolerance policy for sales to minors. She also noted that privatization would cause a loss of controls as well as losing the opportunity to educate our law enforcement personnel.

Jason Jacobs from Youth Villages spoke about how they are working with families with Multistemic Therapy, increased parent supervision and Behavioral Issues. He reported high success rates.

Michael Eisen, NC Dept of MHDDSAS, covered the statewide issues. He mentioned the effectivness of the environmental management strategies. He stated that the ABC would need support in retaining the ABC stores and that privatization would be a great loss of control. He talked about Verla Insco being the primary sponsor for H1579 to Increase Alcohol Taxes and DRH80378 and how these bills need our support. He feels that a Multi-tiered approach is the best way to make a difference.

Thomas McQuiston was the spokesperson for the Parents Helping Parents. He spoke about the passing of his son in Oct of 2008, a memorial fund and a scholarship that may come from it. Contributions can be made by a check payable to the Matthew McQuiston Memorial Fund and sent to 117 Balsam Court, Chapel Hill, NC 27514.

Steve Cory announced that an Alateen meeting was forming at 8:00pm on Monday evenings in Durham at the Aldersgate United Methodist Church. The list of meetings is on-line at

T-Shirts were made available from the North Carolina Preventing Underage Drinking Initiative (NC-PUD).

Monday, October 26, 2009

Community Coalition Meeting

The Coalition for Alcohol & Drug Free Teenagers
of Chapel Hill & Carrboro
invites you attend our Fall lunch meeting on:
Thursday, November 19th at 12:00 noon to 1:30pm
This meeting is an opportunity to report out to the community about the many exciting and promising Coalition initiatives, as well as to hear from you as to concerns, celebrations or needs.

Please let me know if you or your agency would like to report out or make an announcement.

A complimentary lunch will be provided. Please kindly RSVP by Monday, November 16th if you plan to attend this meeting so we can be sure to have enough food on hand.

Location: Squid's Restaurant, 1201 15-501 Hwy Bypass, Chapel Hill, 942-8757 This meeting open to the public. Please forward this invite to others who might like to attend.

I look forward to seeing you soon!

Dale Pratt-Wilson, Director
Coalition for Alcohol & Drug Free Teenagers
of Chapel Hill and Carrboro

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Spring Meeting Notes 2009

Keren Lewis talked about the 5th Annual PTSA Parent Forum: Should We Drink With Our Kids?. You can view this presentation on-line if you CLICK HERE. Melinda Pankratz spoke about the surveys having positive feedback and how effective this forum was.

Stephanie Willis, CHCCS, commended the presenters and organizers for all of the Parent Forums. Her office has received good feedback and calls for information. Two different Task Forces have been merged and new plans are in the works for more parent education programs. The NC ABC Board and Safe and Drug Free Schools continue to fund the alcohol awareness campaigns. Changes are expected because they are not getting through to every student. She feels that the Youth Risk Behavior Survey is being taken more seriously by the students. Plans are to increase the "Social Norming" efforts. Jackie Reid, the Student Assistance Counselor has been working with parents that are challanged with kids that are using. Student Resource Officers and representatives from both police departments have been meeting to keep consistency in the laws and rules shared between the schools. Policies may soon differ due to cuts in government funds, which could mean having to use outsourced programs for affected teens. One campus has seen an increase in violations which will require more surveillance. Pill usage is becoming a bigger problem. Dale spoke about launching a campaign to influence parents to lock up not only alcohol, but their drugs as well. Robin mentioned the "Operation: Medicine Cabinet". Stephanie continued about how laws need to be changed to curb the over perscribing of medications by doctors. The awareness efforts may have to be focusing more on the Middle Schools. Pam Diggs was mentioned for her involvement in the Tobacco Reality Unfiltered.

Colleen Hughes, Center for Prevention Resources spoke about the Unlimited Success program. She is currently working in prevention, stated that 20% of adolescents have tried prescription drugs and that overdoses are the second leading cause of teen deaths.

Billie J. Guthrie, Community Backyard talked about Reclaimimg Futures which is a six step model for changing the way we look at the juvenile justice system, getting teens to treatment and dealing with law violations. She also reviewed the many things the Community Backyard is involved in.

Chapel Hill Police Lt. Pat Burns reported that the Alcohol Response Team had attended a forum in Nashville that was very beneficial to all those that attended. The response team, which began in February 2009, consists of many officers from both Chapel Hill and Carrboro Police Departments who are trained and identified to be part of this task force. They patrol parties, verify bar compliances and while monitoring over-servicing, check keg control, issue violations and revisit recurring situations. They can form teams of officers on quick notice and have been very efficient. Dale interjected and commended Pat, the officers involved and the ALE. She would like to get the UNC Campus Police involved.

Dean Blackburn, Assistant Dean of Students, Community Relations also thanked the officers and other resources. He talked about the student interventions being motivators for the recidivism rates increasing. He also spoke about how Carpe Diem has positive feedback from students and is causing decreases in alcohol use. Matt Sullivan has been helpful in explaining law requirements. Surveys from the students involved reflect that 94% have decreasing alcohol use. Jenny Levering, Assistant Dean of Students, Fraternity & Sorority Life also commended the CHPD. She stated that the students have been responsive to their efforts. They have been focusing on better controls during campus celebration times (NCAA Championship, Halloween, etc.) by lessening open party activity.

Some of the other officiers spoke for Matt Sullivan about the trends in pill usage increasing and the simplicity of obtaining pharmicuticals through the internet. Also, that alcohol larceny is on the rise. Moreover, the calls that are answered for loud music and parties usually turn out to be a mix of colledge and high school students.

Joseph M. Buckner, Chief District Court Judge, Orange County spoke about his 35 years in Chapel Hill and the surrounding communities. He is familiar with the bad outcomes and that the majority of violations result in deferred prosecution. He put in a plug for the upcoming 4th Annual Unity Day at the Hargraves Center on June 29th. He spoke about the plans Gov. Perdue has to reduce funding for drug court. He spoke about North Orange County having a high truancy rate and mentioned that parents are being sited for not getting their kids to school. He feels that multiple programs helping at multiple levels is "all good" and eventually will help make a difference.

Bill from CHHS spoke about the schools budget issues affecting the Student Assistance Programs and distribution of parent information. July 3rd is the next chance to lobby the school board. There was mention of the e-mail that Steve Scgoggs sent to parents about usage and activity on campus.

A representative from the OJJDP came to get interest in the upcoming 11th Annual UDETC Leadership Conference. Please visit for more information.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Community Coalition Meeting

The Coalition for Alcohol & Drug Free Teenagers
of Chapel Hill & Carrboro
invites you attend our Spring lunch meeting on:
Thursday, May 21st at 12:00pm.
This meeting is an opportunity to report out to the community about the many exciting and promising Coalition initiatives, as well as to hear from you as to concerns, celebrations or needs. Please let me know if you personally or your agency would like to make an announcement.

A "complimentary lunch" will be provided. Please kindly RSVP by Monday May 18th if you plan to attend this meeting so we can be sure to have enough food on hand.

Location: Squid's Restaurant, 1201 15-501 Hwy Bypass, Chapel Hill, 942-8757 This meeting open to the public. Please forward this invite to others who might like to attend.

I look forward to seeing you soon!

Dale Pratt-Wilson, Director
The Coalition for Alcohol & Drug Free Teenagers
of Chapel Hill and Carrboro

Friday, January 30, 2009

PTSA Parent Forum

5th Annual PTSA Parent Forum presents:

Should We Drink With Our Teens?

Answer A: “Yes. I want to teach them to be responsible drinkers.”

Answer B: “No. One drink is too much.”

Which answer is correct? A or B?
Which do you practice in your home?
Come and join us to hear from our panel of experts.
You will learn about the latest research and data on teenage drinking, brain development, lowering the drinking age (Amethyst Initiative), the “European Approach”, family counseling, the law in North Carolina.

The evening will consist of one hour of expert panelist presentations followed by one hour of questions and answers. This event is co-sponsored by the High School PTSA organizations of Carrboro, East Chapel Hill,
and Chapel Hill and is free and open to the public.

Date: Wednesday, February 4th at 7PM

Place: East Chapel Hill High School’s Auditorium


Dean Blackburn, MA, Assistant Dean of Students and Community Relations at UNC-Chapel Hill. Mr. Blackburn will discuss current campus culture and university concerns regarding underage drinking. 

Michael Eisen, MA, LPC - State Coordinator - NC Preventing Underage Drinking Initiative/NC Department of Health and Human Services. Mr. Eisen will discuss the National Minimum Drinking Age Act of 1984 and the relationship between the minimum legal drinking age, alcohol consumption and alcohol-related problems including current research about the “European Approach”.

Tina Lepage, PsyD, Lepage Associates Solution-Based Psychological Services, providing services to local adolescents, parents and families.  Dr. Lepage will discuss the social and psychological dynamics of adolescent drinking and tips for parents on prevention.

Matt Sullivan, JD, MSW, Chapel Hill Police Department Crisis Counselor. Mr. Sullivan will concentrate on the criminal and civil liabilities of adult providers and underage consumers, and current teenage drinking

Aaron White, PhD, Health Science Administrator, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Dr. White will share his expert research on the effects of alcohol on the developing teenage brain.

Moderator: Art Belden, ECHHS PTSA President

For information contact

Carrboro High School: Katina Rogers,

Chapel Hill High School: Martha Sheard Farley,

East Chapel Hill High School: Christian Gilbert, xtian12@aolcom,  Karen Lewis,

Coalition for Alcohol and Drug Free Teenagers of Chapel Hill and Carrboro:

If you were unable to attend this year’s Parent Forum, you can access it in the following ways:

TV: Airing on The People's Channel (Channel 8 on Time Warner Cable) Thursday, March 19th and Thursday March 26th at 8:00pm


CD: A CD version is available for check-out at the library at each of the CHCCS high schools.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Fall Meeting Notes 2008

Drew Smith, Devel Dir at the Chapel Hill YMCA described the 18,000 sq. ft. Youth Center. The capitol campaign has already raised 1 million of the 5 million needed to build a community place, for teens ranging from 13 to 18 years, to be completed by 2010. This is a community project. The most recent Middle School Madness event was a success. There were over 500 students in attendance. Jerry Whortan, Exec Dir, spoke about the interest and needs he has heard from both parents and students of a multi-cultural community. For more information or to make a donation, contact Jerry or Drew.

Stephanie Willis, Health Coordinator for the CHCCS, spoke about the Youth Risk Behavior Survey. The results are a combination of the standard survey and a survey which includes questions involving attitudes, perceptions and behaviors. Chapel Hill Police participated in a forum which included Administrators, Student Resource Officers and Substance Abuse Staff about increasing awareness of prescription drug use. Efforts have been made to double up efforts and including canines in searches. Both the Drug and Alcohol Awareness Task Force (Carole Groux, Dale Prattt-Wilson and Robin Clark) and the District Substance Abuse Task Force are combining to discuss new additions to the school policy, development of new materials and looking for other ways to get awareness materials to students and families. One policy change that was discussed is that off-campus substance abuse will result in loss of campus parking and off-campus lunchtime privildges.

Eric Smith, UNC Wellness Services, thanked the CHPD for the control at the Halloween celebration. Eric is involved in the review of the policies and finding better ways of enforcing them. He spoke about core survey shows a large reduction in binge drinking. Also, there are more preemptive measures for incoming students. Wellness Services is involved in the development of strategies to help control drinking for at risk students. One of the developments is known as Environment Management for students, faculty and staff. This includes science based strategies, moving towards Social Norming, streamlining policies and enforcement, and one-on-one assessment.

Dan Sykes, Orange County ABC Board, read amounts and percentages of profits that have been donated for alcohol awareness and law enforcement. The strong ties with the CHPD, Carrboro PD and OC Sheriff to perform compliance checks. A vendor has been chosen to supply the I.D. Scanners and a few of the local ABC stores have them installed. Each store has an Education Center, which provides brochures and information on substance abuse. Warning messages about underage drinking are being printed on the bags. Staff is being educated and trained for the responsible service, sale, and consumption of alcohol. The state is analyzing the efficiency by which liquor is sold. A possible outcome of the evaluation is that liquor sales could be removed from current Alcohol Beverage Control operations and privatized for private businesses to control the sale of hard liquor. One of the major issues regarding the privatization of liquor sales was the impact upon revenues provided to local governments. According to NC House Bill 1292, a study was conducted of possible ABC store privatization results. The study was designed to analyze methods other states use to regulate alcohol distribution and discern the feasibility of partial privatization (the state privatizes the retail function but retains the wholesale function of liquor distribution) and full privatization (the state privatizes both the retail and wholesale functions of liquor distribution). Local ABC boards are concerned about the potential loss of revenue to local municipalities.

Carole Groux, CADFT explained the Safe Homes website and the intended use. Currently recruiting teens to raise awareness and to get families involved in making the promise that their home will not be subjected to underage drinkers.

Trish Halsey, Dir Carpe Diem, spoke about Carpe Diem, a Chapel Hill First Offenders Program for Alcohol Violations. This is a six-week, five-session program being run as a pilot. Each session is two hours in length with an average of 16 students. There will be outside assignments and a group community service project. Students will spend a total of 15 hours fulfilling the requirements of Carpe Diem. Groups will focus on risk reduction, stress management, alcohol and drug education, replacement behaviors, self-awareness and effective interpersonal skills. The group has been visited by speakers, such as Matt Sullivan, who spoke about current laws and how they are enforced. In phase II of the program, beginning in 09, more groups will be attending. For more information contact Trish at or call (919) 240-5521. Also, Orange County offers Project Turn Around, for students 16 years or older.

Dale spoke about the Coalition funding from supporting organizations throughout the county. The Underage Drinking Research Initiative has made great strides in building more coalitions for supporting alcohol and drug free communities countrywide. The Alcohol Purchase Surveys are still being conducted and the results are being given to local law enforcement and ALE with a request for a full compliance check using an underage buyer.

The NC Institute of Medicine Task Force on Substance Abuse Services has an Interim Report to the NC General Assembly, as well as the presentation for the Implications for Adolescents by Pam Silberman, JD, DrPH. President & CEONC Institute of Mental Health.

Michael Eisen, NC Dept of MHDDSAS, announced that the NCIoMTF full report should be released in Jan 09. He spoke about the "Price vs. Use" or Usage Fees that help in saving costs to Public Health. He talked about the research being done on the Effects of Alcohol Tax Increases on Alcohol-Related Disease Mortality in Alaska: Time-Series Analyses from 1976 to 2004 done by Dr. Alexander C. Wagenaar in the Amer Jour of Public Health. The cost of underage drinking is estimated at $1.2 billion per year and increasing the tax could raise 80 million per year to support abuse programs. You can view information from the Institute of Medicine. Other links to visit are the Underage Drinking Education Training Center and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

Karen Lewis (minutes missing)

Andrea Hussong, PhD UNC-CH, (minutes missing) is developing a Prevention Program for Young Children living in Alcoholic Families. For more info contact Andrea Hussong at or call (919) 962-2537.

Linda Hammock (minutes missing)

Laura Wenzel, Pa'lante Director (minutes missing). Pa'lante events are posted at Radio Pa'lante 103.5. Click here to hear about their group.