GCC Staff Attend National Night Out to Educate on Underage Drinking and Share Services

By Tammy Hansen, Prevention Coordinator, Guidance/Care Center, WestCare – Florida Keyes

National Night Out began in 1984 simply with neighbors turning on their porch lights and sitting in front of their homes to protect their communities. It has grown into various types of events held across the U.S. on the first Tuesday of each August. The purpose is to increase awareness about police programs such as drug prevention, neighborhood watch, and other anti-crime efforts.

The Florida Keys events were held in our local parks and sponsored by the Monroe County Sheriff’s office. There were over 60 community partners with tables, handouts, and giveaways along with live music, free burgers, and hot dogs. The police, fire rescue, coast guard, and wildlife officers were in full force with their vehicles and equipment for the attendees to see while learning about the community resources that are available. Local wildlife officers even had baby crocodiles and snakes on hand!

The Guidance/Care Center’s Prevention staff and Mobile Crisis Response Team (MRT) worked together to cover four different events throughout Monroe County by holding a “SAMHSA Talk About Underage Drinking” activity at the various National Night Out events. This included an alcohol myth or fact spin-the-wheel game, which brought awareness and discussions about the high rate of underage drinking and what actions we could take within the family and our community to protect our youth.

Our MRT staff were building suicide and mental health awareness by showcasing their 24/7 services and ability to respond in the field when and where they are needed the most.

GCC values our partnership shared with local law enforcement and was happy to take part in these wonderful events!

By WestCare

We're a family of nonprofit organizations providing a wide spectrum of health and human services across the United States, 3 U.S. territories, and 2 Republics.

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