October 31, 2019

Van Hollen and Cardin Announce $125,000 for Prevention of Youth Substance Misuse in Cecil County

Today, U.S. Senators Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin (both D-Md.) announced $125,000 for Cecil County, Md. to establish and strengthen community collaboration in support of local efforts to prevent youth substance misuse. The funding was awarded through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) Drug Free Communities Program (DFC). This funding will support the Cecil County Drug-Free Communities Coalition’s work to increase youth engagement, implement social marketing and media campaigns, grow youth capacity in areas of governance and communication, and expand peer-to-peer leadership opportunities.

“Parents should never have to grieve the loss of a child, but for far too many families, the opioid epidemic has made this nightmare a reality. These federal funds will help Cecil County engage and educate young people to help prevent these tragic losses,” said Senator Van Hollen, a member of the Budget and Appropriations Committees. “I was glad to support Cecil County’s application for this funding, and I will continue working to provide Maryland with the resources necessary to prevent and treat substance misuse.”

“The opioid epidemic has hit every corner of our state and our country. Unfortunately, our children are not immune. These federal funds will help Cecil County give young people the tools they need to prevent substance misuse before it starts, setting them up for a drug-free future,” said Senator Cardin. “I’m proud to continue to support the innovative ways that our local communities are working to find comprehensive solutions to end this public health crisis.”

The DFC program provides funding to community organizations that facilitate citizen participation in local drug prevention efforts. Eligible applicants are community-based coalitions addressing youth substance misuse. DFC-funded coalitions engage multiple sectors of the community and employ a variety of environmental strategies to address local substance use problems. Senators Van Hollen and Cardin have advocated for robust funding for the DFC program as well as funding for opioid and other substance misuse programs.