Partners in Prevention

The Healthcare Foundation of La Porte (HFL) Board of Directors has approved $2.8 million in grant funding over the next four years for Partners in Prevention, an initiative that will help schools identify, implement and sustain evidence-based substance use prevention programs. More than 13,000 La Porte County students will be impacted by curriculum that supports positive peer relationships and social competences to avoid the use of addictive substances.

HFL commissioned a study through the Center for Health Policy from the IU Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health that assessed the burden of opioid addiction in La Porte County and identified the community’s needs or gaps in providing adequate prevention, treatment, and long-term recovery services. One of the recommendations from the La Porte County Opioid Study was to use evidence-based prevention programs in schools to combat the opioid epidemic.

School-based prevention is an effective long-term strategy to stop substance use and save lives. Schools in La Porte have an opportunity to equip students with skills that not only help them avoid drugs, alcohol, and other addictive substances but can also help improve their academic achievement, attendance, classroom behavior and social and emotional well-being. These programs can also help reduce bullying and violence.

WHAT IS PARTNERS IN PREVENTION?

Partners in Prevention is a grant initiative offered by the Healthcare Foundation of La Porte (HFL) to all schools in La Porte County. Schools are invited to apply for planning and implementation grants, technical assistance, and evaluation for proven substance use prevention programs. Through the first phase of this initiative, a total of $71,004 has been awarded to 11 schools for planning grants. HFL has contracted the Education Development Center (EDC) as the Technical Assistance (TA) provider that assisted schools during the planning and will help with the implementation phase of the initiative. RTI International (RTI) has been contracted as the evaluation firm who will annually, over the course of three years, evaluate programming effectiveness and delivery of programming with fidelity. HFL is interested in learning about the overall impact of Partners in Prevention, and the effects on related youth risk and protective factors. These factor determine how drug use begins and how it progresses.

OUR MODEL

In 2018, Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation committed more than $10.2 million to 151 Indianapolis schools delivering proven prevention programs to 71,112 students by the 2020-2021 school year. This funding is helping to implement evidence-based prevention programs in public (traditional, charter and innovation network) and accredited private K-12 schools in Marion County. Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation has kindly permitted HFL to adopt the main components of their initiative, and we thank them for their support.

PLANNING & IMPLEMENTATION GRANTS

HFL will connect grant recipients with prevention experts from EDC who will provide free, step-by-step technical assistance to help: 1) identify the proven, age-appropriate prevention program(s) that best meet(s) the needs of each applicant’s students, staff and school environment and 2) help ensure planning grant recipients carefully think through the steps required for successful program implementation and continued sustainability. The technical assistance providers have been chosen by HFL due to their expertise in assisting schools implement evidence-based programs with fidelity. RTI International will determine whether the programs are being implemented as intended and whether these efforts are having the expected impact.

Schools participating in the Partners in Prevention initiative applied for implementation grants in the spring of 2019 to begin implementing their chosen evidence-based substance use prevention program. Schools have begun their selected programs in fall 2019 and will continue over the course of three years (August 2019-June 2022). Schools awarded implementation grants will continue to receive support from EDC and RTI throughout the three-year grant period to get their programs running and collect data to evaluate the impact of their programs.

RESOURCES AND DOCUMENTS

Contact us with questions or for more information about this school prevention initiative.