Friday, November 3, 2017

TOP STORY >> Red Ribbon Week: Drug prevention starts with kids

By 2nd Lt. Hunter Rininger
19th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

At most Air Force installations, the Drug Demand Reduction program and the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment program are very much separate entities. But here at Little Rock AFB, ADAPT and DDR have teamed up to prevent alcohol and drug abuse amongst service members, their families and the local community.

DDR and ADAPT, the first collaborating teams in the U.S. Air Force, providing prevention and outreach education to base constituents that focus on substance abuse prevention. The ADAPT team focuses on providing the local community with outreach through early drug awareness education. The National Red Ribbon Campaign began in 1985 to provide drug awareness to youth. 

“Our goal is to increase our prevention efforts across the Wing in hopes that it will increase the number of self-referrals and decrease the number of substance related incidents that occur each year,” said SSgt Leah Chhoeun, ADAPT Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge here. “Additionally, we hope to increase members’ knowledge of responsible drinking and healthy alternative coping skills.”

This year, LRAFB restored its support in providing drug awareness at Arnold Drive Elementary, Tolleson Elementary and Lawson Elementary. The team serviced over 1,000 students (Pre-K through 5th grade) in the local community. Local ADAPT Counselors, Marine Detachment Substance Abuse Control Officer/Specialists, DDR personnel and 19 SFS K-9 Unit spoke at the schools during Red Ribbon Week.

The team’s efforts have expanded across the Air Force. This year the team developed a prevention model that is currently being used Air Force-wide. The team has managed to double its budget for 2018, which will lead to an expansion of the team’s outreach programs. 

As Red Ribbon Week comes to an end, it’s important to remember that the ADAPT and DDR programs at LRAFB are available year-round. The team’s mission is to increase self-identification with any substance abuse issues and their mission can only be accomplished if service members, their families, and the ADAPT/DDR coalition members continue to be mindful of others’ needs. 

For more information, contact the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment facility at 501-987-7338. Their office hours are 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. 

No comments: