Friday, November 16, 2018

A Day of Hope Comes to Wheeling's Drug Issues

Wheeling, W Va. – The Community Impact Coalition & the West Virginia Council of Churches collaborated agian to bring the 4th annual prevention & recovery celebratory day called “West Virginia Day of Hope.” It is celebrated over 3rd weekend in September. It gives West Virginia churches, synagogues and other ministries the opportunity to promote, educate and advocate for substance abuse prevention and recovery from addiction.  Locally, the faith communities of Wheeling planned a day of activities that was open to everyone. September 15, 2018 was a special day in the friendly city.

Ø  1:00pm - Interfaith 12 Step Service at St Matthew’s Episcopal Church was open to ALL!
Ø  2:00pm - March of Hope from St. Matthew’s to Heritage Port was open to ALL!
Ø  2:30pm - Day of Hope Rally at Veterans Memorial Amphitheater. Open to ALL!
Ø  5:00pm - Day of Hope Memorial Spaghetti Dinner at Christ United Methodist Church was open to ALL! Cost is $5 for adult, $3 for child under 12. Donations benefited the Will Ruberg Service Scholarship at Wheeling Jesuit University and the House of the Carpenter serving the needy of greater Wheeling.

     The 3rd weekend in September is specially designated by faith communities to promote a drug free life-style with folks across West Virginia.  Faith organizations are encouraged to celebrate in accordance with their own traditions, beliefs and missions as they organize and plan the event for their congregations. 

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

High School Interns IMPACT Younger Youth

Impact Summer Youth Interns were fantastic this summer. They held a Youth Forum for the YMCA campers grades 5-8 on substance abuse topics. Their theme was "Blast Off" and they hosted hands one learning stations. We loved seeing youth influence younger youth! They developed the format for the event with adult assistance. They also represented the coalition on the news during the events. Finally they helped create and coordinate the media campaign that is currently running. See the PSA above.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Wheeling Park SADD Chapter Cares About All Students

Wheeling WV - The Wheeling Park High School SADD Chapter launched their annual Please Return OMonday or PROM Campaign last month. They had a very busy April 2018 encouraging a substance free lifestyle for teens and providing signage to place around school and the prom. First they attended and helped out with the MADD Law Enforcement Recognition Dinner on April 12. The students planned and took part in a "Sticker Shock" event on April 13 at Gumby's on Wheeling Island. They placed stickers on alcohol products urging folks not to purchase alcohol for underage teens. They were aided by a Wheeling Police Officer and they learned a lot about checking I.D.s from the clerks. They also held a "Tie One On" event at the student parking lot at their school. The red ribbons, provided by MADD, were place on all cars. They had local media coverage from WTRF! Their message was don't ride in a car with anyone who has been drinking alcohol and to stay substance free! This shows the important work they do for Ohio County. These fine young people could also use your support by donating to their trip to the SADD National Conference in Washington DC or the SADD WV Conference. Please contact 304-233-2045 to make a donation!

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Rethink Don't Drink

April is Alcohol Awareness Month and Ohio County 4th graders helped us create a wonderful campaign this year by taking part in our Choose a Clear Mind Poster Contest. The top 3 school winner's entries will be featured on billboards in Wheeling for the month of April. The top 3 winners are Alexis Kuntz from Middle Creek Elementary, Emma N. from Woodsdale Elementary and Dayton VanFossen from Elm Grove Elementary (in no particular order). Alliyah Williams from Woodsdale gave us our slogan of "Rethink Don't Drink!"Each participating school had a school winner that received as banner of their entry to be hung prominently at their school until the end of the year. Those winners are Addison Baker from Bethlehem, Nathan Lamagna from Steenrood, Isaac sands from Ritchie, JoceLynn McFarland from West Liberty, Molly Georges from Warwood, Gianna Pramesa from Madison, Christopher Alkhouri from St. Vincent de Paul, Madison Miehle from our Lady of Peace, and Gabriella Blake from Corpus Christi. An honorable mention for slogan goes to Seneca Heller. Impact thanks the school principals and guidance counselors for allowing their students to take part in the poster contest and the Keep a Clear Mind Program which inspired it.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Heroin Starts Here Campaign Launched

     This is our new message to parents. We preface this by saying that not all youth who drink alcohol and smoke marijuana will use illicit drugs like heroin. What we are saying is that by using alcohol or marijuana in their teens, young people are setting their brains up for addiction and increasing the likelihood of moving on to other more dangerous drugs including heroin.

     Many parents may say, "well I drank and smoked pot and I'm not addicted to heroin." To this we add, when you were younger marijuana was not as potent as it is today and opiate pain killers were not easily found. Times have changed and we, as parents, must take steps in increase the chances that teens do not progress to even more dangerous drugs. It's time to have an open mind and realize we need to change our reaction to drug use. There are risks to using alcohol and marijuana under the age of 21. Talk to your kids and teens about alcohol and drug use, set boundaries, listen and continue the conversation.

     Finally, heroin/opiate pain killer addiction and overdose is a major problem facing our local residents today.  We know this garners much media attention. Our concern is that alcohol and marijuana use in teens is not getting the attention it needs. Plenty of problems arise from youth alcohol and marijuana abuse even if it doesn't lead to addiction. Local surveys indicate that those under 18, who are using substances, are primarily using alcohol and marijuana. Some risks include: lowered academic success, risky sexual behavior, car accidents, and early onset of mental illness.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Impact Partners with Faith Leaders to Institute WV Day of Hope

The Faith Community Calls for Hope in WV's Substance Abuse Epidemic
Wheeling, W Va. – The Community Impact Coalition & the West Virginia Council of Churches continue to collaborate to bring the 2nd annual prevention & recovery celebratory day called West Virginia Day of Hope.” This year it falls on September 18, 2016 and it will be celebrated yearly on the 3rd Sunday in September.  The idea for the day originated in Wheeling at a coalition round table discussion.  The goal of the initiative is to promote a drug free life-style with folks across West Virginia.  

Faith organizations are encouraged to celebrate in accordance with their own traditions, beliefs and missions as they organize and plan the event for their congregations.  The observance is meant to be open to all faiths so it can be celebrated anytime during the weekendWest Virginia churches and other ministries will have the opportunity to promote, educate and advocate for substance abuse prevention and recovery from addiction.  Faith organizations can make a great impact on the lives of West Virginians.  

It is promoted to all churches in WV by WV Council of ChurchesLast year it was observed in many ways including: candle light services, prayers, litanies, vigils, fundraisers & donations to recovery organizations, sermons, information in bulletins, provided resources, and connecting with prevention or recovery contacts.  After the Day of Hope, the WV Council or Churches acquired grant funding to host trainings especially tailored to the faith community.  They will also hold 10-12 listening events throughout the state.  The local event is called Project Hope and it will be held on October 27, 2016 from 6-8pm at Simpson United Methodist Church in Moundsville.     

Martha Polinsky, Project Coordinator, states, “Who better to bring hope and compassion but the faith community?  It’s what they do.  We are experts in prevention and they are experts in hope which is a powerful partnership for West Virginia.”

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

On Fleek Parents Don't Provide Alcohol

Check out this 30 second PSA!  Our youth interns worked with adult coalition members to create it!  On fleek parenting means not providing alcohol or hosting alcohol parties for teens or anyone under 21.  Yes, our youth agree!

Friday, July 15, 2016

!MPACT Youth Interns & The Amazing Act

Community Impact Coalition has four high school interns creating and planning a youth forum and media campaign.  We thank Angela Stevens, Jeff Voanakis, Isabella Gillespie and Cameron McCabe on their great work.  The Amazing Act Youth Forum will take place on July 21, 2016.  It is co-hosted by Laughlin Chapel's summer youth program.  The media campaign will feature a TV & radio PSA as well as billboards in Ohio County.  The media campaign promotes alcohol free youth by urging parents not to supply alcohol to those under 21

Wednesday, April 27, 2016


Wheeling, WV - The Ohio County Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition has been in existence since 2005 and over the years, it has evolved and expanded in its ability to promote positive change and impact the community.  Members are proud of their collective accomplishments, thus far, and they want to pave the way for maximum impact.  The members of the community-based group decided it was time for a new name and logo to reflect the group’s change and growth. The coalition’s goals remain the same, however, as science progresses and more is known, the group has adapted existing strategies and developed new ones.  Lessons learned make the organization older and wiser.  Furthermore, a name change would allow the group to be open to the possibility of expanding its goals in the future. 

Coalition participants view the group as a true community-based coalition driven by community members with the support of key leaders!  We are a community up organization not a leadership down organization.  This is the best recipe for real and lasting change!  Come join us as we celebrate our past and renew our commitment to positively impacting youth and families in Ohio County.  

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Choose a Clear Mind Poster Winners

We are posting to top 3 winners from Ohio County Schools 4th Grade Students!  
They are in random order.  All will appear on billboards in Ohio County!


The Ohio County Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition (OCSAPC) is funded by a federal Drug Free Communities (DFC) Support Program Grant from the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Youth Services System, Inc. (YSS) serves as the coalition's fiscal and administrative agent.