Pictured here are students and alumni from our local recovery high school, Independence Academy (www.iarecoveryhs.org). As part of our comprehensive curriculum, young people in recovery share their stories of addiction, treatment and recovery with students during 9th/10th grade health class.
Download printable PDF document of our Substance Misuse Prevention curriculum here:
In addition to the local resource sheet, all students will receive a paper copy of a Drug Facts/informational brochure:
Tuesday, November 28, 2017
Gates Middle School, First Parish Road
7th Grade Studio Rooms 1029 & 1030
Monday, January 29, 2018
Scituate High School Library
606 Chief Justice Cushing Highway
Wednesday, March 21, 2018
Scituate Town Library, 85 Branch Street
Conference Room (first floor)
Register now for everyone’s favorite prevention workshop!
Scituate FACTS is proud to partner with Scituate Public Schools to offer this award-winning Substance Use Prevention Workshop for Scituate parents and caregivers of children ages 9-15. Guiding Good Choices participants will get the latest data on local youth substance use, learn about the risk factors for addiction and, finally, acquire skills to build protection in their own families. Scituate families rave about this class! Kids come for session three for pizza and refusal skills practice.
Parent/guardian must attend all 4 sessions – please click link to review schedule. Space is limited to small groups of 20. $18.00 fee for the Family Guide and pizza night may be paid at the first class (cash or check made payable to Town of Scituate). Scholarships available by simply emailing scituateFACTS@gmail.com.
Just the FACTS:
What parents and caregivers need to know about vaping and juuling
Vaping2.0 – Click for printable PDF.
What is vaping? What is juuling?
Vapes (sometimes called e-cigarettes) are devices used to ingest vaporized liquid nicotine, liquid THC from marijuana, flavorings, or a combination. Vape devices consist of a battery, an atomizer with a heating coil, and an absorbent material that absorbs a liquid called “e-juice” that can contain nicotine, THC, flavoring, and always containing a variety of chemicals.
The battery allows the atomizer to heat the liquid which creates an aerosol vapor that is breathed into the lungs and breathed out into the air repeatedly – sometimes forming large aerosol clouds. Spend some time conducting YouTube searches to view how-to videos, vape cloud contests, and user reviews of vape products to get a sense of the vape culture.
Vape products were created by the tobacco industry to replace lost customers of cigarette smoking, which has been steadily declining over the years. There are literally thousands of e-juice flavor options such as Cool Cucumber and Mango, a marketing tactic to lure new customers that is especially appealing to young people. Many consumers are unaware of the harms from vaping. Some people believe that it’s safer than smoking, even though there is no science yet to support that theory.
This hottest vape product on the market is the juul vape, pictured above, from www.juul.com. Juuls, as they are called, are appealing to the youth and college market for several reasons: sleek look; slim, discreet size; comes with a USB charger; easy to use pods in desirable flavors; low cost (around $40); and high function. Basically, juuls work well: the technology creates a strong “throat hit” and delivers bursts of nicotine to the user. One pod – which might be shared with a group of friends in one hangout, or consumed over the course of a few days by an individual user – contains the same amount of nicotine as a pack of cigarettes.
How common is vaping?
There has been a dramatic increase in the use of vapes by youth in the last few years (tripling among US HS students between 2013 and 2014). Vaping is now the most common way to use nicotine in the United States. The tobacco industry is marketing to young people with fruity flavorings, cool technical devices, and a vape culture, that is not branded like a tobacco product. While awareness of youth vaping among parents and caregivers has increased recently, as have incidences of possession at Scituate High School, we have not observed an overall increase in youth use over the past three years. “Have you ever tried vaping?” among Scituate High School Students has ranged from 45% in 2015, to 48% in 2016, and 46% in 2017. “Have you vaped in the past month?” answers ranged from 28% in 2015, to 33% in 2016, and 30% in 2017. We will continue to closely monitor trends and adapt our health curriculum and supports accordingly. So, use is up from 5 years ago, but appears to be holding steady.
In Massachusetts, almost half (45%) of all high school students report having tried vaping at some point in their life, and 24% report using a vape in the past 30 days (according to the 2015 Statewide YRBS). By comparison, 46% of Scituate High students report ever vaping (similar rate to state). However, 3 out of 10 Scituate High School students (30%) report vaping in the past 30 days (according to our 2017 YRBS anonymous survey, this is considered “current use” and is significantly higher than the peer group across Massachusetts (30% vs. 24%). So, vaping is a pronounced area of concern locally: Scituate teens are vaping more.
In Scituate, we see the prevalence of vaping increase with age (similar to significant increases in alcohol and marijuana use as our kids get older). For example, only 3% of 7th graders report vaping on a regular basis, while 37% of Scituate High School juniors and seniors vape. See chart below, statistics are from anonymous student self-reports (YRBS Survey) during the 2016-17 school year. See chart below, statistics are from anonymous student self-reports (YRBS Survey) during the 2016-17 school year.
Vaping is more common among boys. Ratio approximately 3:1, boys to girls, among freshmen, sophomores, and juniors at Scituate High School. By senior year, rates are more even across genders. In middle school, the gap is wider, with very few girls ever trying vapes (Lifetime use, 2016-17 YRBS).
We also note that the type of substance used changes with age – with most middle school students using flavorings, and most high school students using nicotine. However, since juuls are quickly becoming the device of choice across all age groups, we expect that more middle school students will be exposed to nicotine, since juul does not make “flavoring-only” pods. Vapes are commonly used delivery devices among users of marijuana as well. Our local statistics indicate there is more we can do to intervene early before use escalates.
How harmful is vaping?
What can do if my child is vaping?
If it’s illegal, how are they getting it?
What if he/she won’t stop?
Get professional help. If the behavior continues despite monitoring and consequences, there are likely underlying reasons. Pursue the independent counselor route as soon as possible.
Many people misuse substances as a way of coping with anxiety, stress, or depression. These individuals are also at greater risk for addiction, so it’s important to treat the “why” before a serious problems set in.
If your child is also using alcohol, marijuana or another substance, there are several programs in the Boston area that offer a Comprehensive Assessment to determine problem severity. Consider any of the following youth programs that offer comprehensive assessment, treatment, and case management services for families:
ARMS Program at MGH – Addiction Recovery Management Service, Boston (for ages 14-26)
ASAP at Children’s – Adolescent Substance Abuse Program, Boston
Catalyst Clinic at Boston Medical Center, Boston
This new clinic provides access to a wide range of services including primary care, behavioral health, and support resources for patients up to age 25 and families.
Primary care doctor must be at BMC.
McLean Hospital, Belmont
Support is also critical for the parents to manage their stress and effectively support their child. Certain parenting skills are proven to work in motivating a child toward reducing their use or initiating treatment. An online training in the Community Reinforcement and Family Training (CRAFT) approach is available through Allies in Recovery. Set up your own free account at www.alliesinrecovery.net, using your zip code.
Never worry alone. Involve trusted parents, teachers, coaches, your pediatrician, school counselor and other adults who can help you support your child’s health and well-being. Our local community coalition, Scituate FACTS, offers ongoing education and support opportunities. www.scituateFACTS.org, or email scituateFACTS@gmail.com.
2016-17 Youth Risk Behavior Survey Results, Scituate Public Schools, by Grade:
YRBS Survey Details
|7th Grade||8th Grade||9th Grade||10th Grade||11th Grade||12th Grade|
|Have you ever tried vaping?||6%||14%||22%||51%||50%||63%|
|Have you vaped in the past month?||3%||10%||15%||31%||37%||37%|
Scituate FACTS Open Coalition Meeting Agenda
Wednesday, September 20, 2017
Community Room, Scituate Town Library
6:30 – 6:45pm Welcome – Annmarie Galvin
6:45 – 7:00pm Coalition Overview and Outcomes
7:00 – 7:20pm Presentation: Opioid Dispensing Practices – Dr. Michael Geary, South Shore Health Orthopedics
7:20 – 8:00pm Action Plan for Year 5 of DFC grant
Upcoming FACTS Events & Volunteer Opportunities
September 26, 2017 – Youth Health Connection Conference – 7th Annual Prevention of Underage Drinking and Substance Use Conference at Lombardo’s in Randolph. The theme for this year is “Empowered Coalition Educating Youth & Communities about Marijuana.” More than 12 members of the Scituate FACTS Coalition, including students, will participate again this year!
September 27, 2017 – “If They Had Known” documentary film screening, from 4:30-6:00pm, Hingham Middle School
1103 Main Street, Hingham. The Hingham/Hull/Cohasset coalitions are offering this opportunity for stakeholders to preview a new film that was created by friends of a young man from the North Shore who passed away after mixing prescription pills and alcohol. While it is intended for young people, Scituate FACTS representatives will attend to consider the film for a potential showing in our community. Additional screeners are welcome, reserve here: if-they-had-known-tickets-37898469342
Throughout September: “Weeding through the Myths” Mondays and Wednesdays: 5:00-7:00pm; Tuesdays and Thursdays: 10:00am-1:00pm; Saturdays: 1:00-3:00pm, at the Hanover Mall (across from Foot Locker).
An interactive educational display created by South Shore Hospital to provide insight on upcoming changes in Massachusetts related to the recreational use of Marijuana. It is open to the public and appropriate for kids. Check it out!
October 24, 2017 – Statewide Coalition Training – all day, EDC in Waltham. MassTapp is the technical assistance provider for Coalitions in Massachusetts. Their annual conference will cover a variety of workshops for coalition leaders and volunteers. Scituate FACTS is presenting on sector engagement! Please contact Annmarie if you are interested in learning best practices and networking with other coalitions: firstname.lastname@example.org
October 24, 2017 – South Shore FACTS Meeting, 2:30-4:00, South Shore VNA, 30 Reservoir Park Drive, Rockland.
Special Presentation from Allies in Recovery- learn more about this free online learning platform for families –
developed with the evidenced-based CRAFT tool (www.alliesinrecovery.net). Contact Barbara if you would be interested in attending on behalf of Scituate email@example.com
November 5, 2017 – Scituate FACTS presents “The Power of Prevention” Summit, 12:30-4:00pm, Gates Middle School Campus.
A free conference for all of us who are parenting, teaching, coaching and raising children in Scituate; featuring resource information and a variety of experts from the field. Onsite childcare provided through
Scituate Recreation. Pre-registration details coming soon!
Updates since April Coalition Meeting:
Scituate FACTS Open Coalition Meeting Agenda
6:30 – 6:45 pm Welcome & Introductions
6:45 – 7:30 pm Working Session with Group: Full-Day Prevention Conference Concept
7:30 – 8:00 pm Review recent projects and upcoming activities (see details below)
The Scituate FACTS Coalition is proud of the programming we provide. We also realize that it’s hard for parents and community members to attend so many evening events! We are considering planning a one-day Prevention Conference next year – with a keynote speaker, and a variety of breakout sessions.
Please join us on Tuesday night to share your thoughts. What speakers, topics, resources should we cover? We welcome your opinions – as well as event planning, marketing, and business support. More info to come!
Updates since March Coalition Meeting
Upcoming FACTS Events
photo by Ann-Marie Rollo, www.amrollo.com
Together we will discuss what parents can do to model responsible drinking, and teach kids about the consequences of alcohol use and abuse, Also, tangible ideas for how to talk with other adults surrounding this cultural issue. Steve Maguire Co-Presents with Annmarie Galvin from FACTS.
May 3, 2017, Gates Library 7:00-8:30pm
From the Series: Parenting the Middle Years — with Steve Maguire
This series targets grades 4 through 9 (ages 9-15). Mark your calendars for these free presentations from Scituate High School science teacher and Professional Speaker, Stephen Maguire, M.Ed.
All parents/caregivers welcome.