Substance Abuse Prevention/Behavioral Health Promotion
Jennifer L. DeWitt, LADC, LMFT, CAC, CPS
Prevention Coordinator


Check us out on Facebook and Instagram for a Weekly Wednesday Wellness post! We will share prevention, treatment, and recovery messages about substance use and mental health topics for all ages and community sectors – let us know what you want to learn more about too!
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Substance Abuse Prevention is really Behavioral Health Promotion.

And it occurs across the lifespan, not just in childhood, and not just in schools.

Waterbury’s comprehensive prevention efforts address multiple substances (such as alcohol, nicotine, and illicit drugs) that can impact health and development. We examine root causes of problem use (such as stress or anxiety), and environmental factors that affect behaviors and attitudes (such as easy retail access, or parental norms about use).

To learn more about the regional priority setting process that guides our local-level prevention efforts, please visit:This Link

Waterbury also follows the guidelines of the
Strategic Prevention Framework (SPF)

and the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA)

7 Strategies for Community Level Change


Both guidelines help in developing the infrastructure needed for community‐based, public health approaches that can lead to effective and sustainable reductions in alcohol, tobacco and other drug (ATOD) use and abuse.


Providing Information

To schedule a community presentation or an informational table and resources on any of the following topics, please contact us today!

  • Updates on the Opioid Crisis *presentation can be tailored to audience
  • Naloxone Training & Skills Practice *training can be tailored to audience

  • Cannabis & Consequences for Youth: Vaping, Edibles, and Other Things Adults Don’t Know Enough About *presentation is for parents and other adult caregivers/concerned citizens only

Enhancing Skills (fee based training)
We offer skills training opportunities at minimum cost to participants. Cost typically includes fees only for mandatory workbooks/participant materials. Call today to inquire about hosting or to RSVP for the following skills training sessions:

  • Speaking of Developmental Assets This brief introduction into the 40 Developmental Assets Framework© is for audiences of all ages and will introduce new participants through an interactive presentation to the concepts of building protective factors, and using intentional relationship development to connect with young people in supportive and empowering ways (25, 45, or 90 minute training session for groups of 15-50 persons) $5 per person
  • Everyone’s An Asset Builder This training is designed for participants who care about and are concerned for young people today. This training takes participants on a deeper dive into the 40 Developmental Assets Framework©, to understand and apply the principles of asset building in their personal lives. (4 hour training for groups of 15-50 persons)  Training is coordinated through
  • Sharing the Asset Message This workshop is for participants who are familiar and already working with the 40 Developmental Assets Framework©. This skills session will help Asset Builders to ramp up efforts to share the asset message through committed action plans. (4 hour training for groups of 15-35 persons)  Training is coordinated through
  • QPR: Question. Persuade. Refer. Three steps anyone can take to prevent suicide. Clear. Concise. Efficient. QPR is the most widely taught Gatekeeper training in the world. It is an evidence-based skills training that can save lives and reduce suicidal behavior. (1-2 hour training for groups of 5-25 persons) $5 per person
  • Mental Health First Aid is and internationally recognized, evidenced-based skills course. MHFA is the help offered to a person developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. This course teaches laypersons how to recognize signs and symptoms of an emerging mental health conduction or crisis, and teaches a 5-step action plan to provide support until professional help is received, or until the crisis resolves. (Course and certification is a MINIMUM 8 hours of instruction NOT INCLUDING any breaks or lunch. Course is typically conducted over a 2-4 day/evening timeframe for 12 hours total content, for groups of 5-30 persons) $50 per person

Helpful Links and Family Resources:


Talk. They hear you. SAMHSA's underage drinking prevention campaign helps parents and caregivers start talking to their children early about the dangers of alcohol.



Tobacco (Nicotine)


Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS), Vaping, Juuling

Vaping - What you need to know and how to talk to your kids (PDF Guide)



Prescription Drug Misuse

Prevent Med Abuse

National DEA Drug Take Back

CT Opioid Toolkit (For Professionals and Prevention Practitioners)

Resources for persons, families, and communities Living LOUD:
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) Fact Sheets
Problem Gambling – coming soon
Mental Health Issues – coming soon
Suicide Prevention
CT Suicide Prevention Resources Tools, Education & Curriculum
Prefer to text? Try these helpful resources! - coming soon
Prefer an App? Try these helpful resources! – coming soon


Tobacco Prevention Toolkit