Five Towns CTC honors youth advocatesUnveils new youth drug, alcohol use data
The Five Town Communities That Care Coalition presented their latest Youth Advocate Awards at its quarterly meeting Jan. 10.
The awards went to Cub Scout Pack 200 and Boy Scout Troop 200, chartered by the First Congregational Church of Camden, and Camden-Rockport Elementary School Physical Education teacher, Gary Spinney.
Award winners (individual and organization or group) are selected from a pool of candidates who have been nominated due to their work for youth in the five town community of Appleton, Camden, Hope, Lincolnville, and Rockport. Chris Mills and Brian Hebert accepted the awards on behalf of the Scouts, who dedicated substantial time and energy in planning and executing a day of children's activities at Five Town CTC's third annual Harvest Hoot family festival. Spinney, a longtime teacher, was honored for his dedication to children's education, health and wellbeing.
After the awards were presented, coalition members discussed findings from the 2012 Maine Youth Drug And Alcohol Use Survey. The survey, administered last spring to sixth to 12th-grade students in the Five Town community, is designed to assess students’ involvement in a specific set of problem behaviors, as well as their exposure to a set of risk and protective factors shown to influence the likelihood of academic success, school dropout, substance abuse, violence, delinquency, and teen pregnancy among youth.
MYDAUS 2012 revealed that Five Town students still exhibit high rates for several risk factors, including low commitment to school, low perceived risks of drug use, and rewards for antisocial involvement. The survey also revealed several areas of strength, as seen in high positive response rates for the following protective factors: pro-social involvement, community recognition for pro-social involvement, and interaction with pro-social peers.
Members of the Five Town CTC Community Data Work Group, as well as Five Town CTC Executive Director Dalene Dutton, presented the information and then solicited feedback from Coalition members on potential areas of focus to be addressed in Five Town CTC's next Community Action Plan. The meeting was the first of several to be held in coming months with the aim of educating the public about community-specific data and constructing a profile which allows the community to analyze its unique strengths and challenges. Five Town CTC will then assess existing resources and identify any gaps to be filled by expanding programs or implementing new tested, effective approaches.
Five Town CTC has been working since 2003 to promote healthy youth development and to reduce the incidence of problem adolescent problem behaviors such as substance abuse, suicide, violence, delinquency, school dropout, and teen pregnancy.
For more information about Five Town CTC, or to learn how to nominate an individual/organization for a Youth Advocate Award, visit fivetownctc.org, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 236-9800.