More than 1,700 substance abuse prevention and treatment specialists from across the country convened in Austin, Texas this week for CADCA’s 2013 Mid-Year Training Institute, where they gained new skills to tackle their community’s drug and crime problems.
This one-of-a-kind intensive training opportunity offered participants more than 75 half-day and full-day courses on a wide range of topics – everything from how to address prescription drug abuse and the abuse of synthetic drugs to how to create tobacco-free environments and develop policies to reduce marijuana use and underage drinking.
Participants heard from several federal leaders and national experts, such as keynote speaker Dr. Pennie Foster-Fishman, a social change expert and professor in the Department of Psychology and a Senior Outreach Fellow in University Outreach and Engagement at Michigan State University in East Lansing, Mich. Foster-Fishman discussed how coalitions can take their work to the next level to create social population-level change.
Other notable speakers and presenters included Pam Hyde, Administrator of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA); Benjamin Tucker, Deputy Director of State, Local and Tribal Affairs for the Office of National Drug Control Policy; Charles Reynolds, Director of the Division of Community Programs for SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention; Ralph Hingson, Director of the Division of Epidemiology and Prevention Research at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA); and David L. Lakey, MD, Commissioner, Texas Department of State Health Services.
The Mid-Year also welcomed nearly 50 international attendees who traveled from 15 countries to take part in this unique training experience. Around 300 youth also participated in the Mid-Year as part of CADCA’s National Youth Leadership Initiative (NYLI), where they learned leadership skills and the steps necessary to create change in their communities.
The Mid-Year offered something for everyone, whether the coalition leader was new to the substance abuse prevention field or a veteran of this field. Several people shared their thoughts about CADCA’s Mid-Year on CADCA’s Facebook page and through Twitter.
“The entire Healthy Androscoggin (Maine) delegation thoroughly enjoyed #MYTI2013. Thank you CADCA for some great workshops and information we can bring back to enhance our work in our community," said Scott Gagnon with the Healthy Androscoggin coalition in Lewiston, Maine.
“TY [thank you] for bringing this info about marijuana to #myti2013 @KevinSabet @ASAMorg @CAMYJHU @CADCA,” said the San Antonio Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse (SACADA) on Twitter.
“LEAD staff participating in @CADCA #MYTI2013. Great learning and networking opportunity in Austin,” said Linking Efforts Against Drugs (LEAD) on Twitter.
Pictures from CADCA’s Mid-Year are available on CADCA’s Facebook page.