The Alliance Against Drugs:
Executive Director’s Year End Report 2009-2010
The Alliance has known significant growth during the fiscal year 2009-2010. This growth can be attributed to the numerous community connections we have made, the programs we have provided and the advancement of our on-line technology. My hope is that our ongoing growth will continue to be a result of regional community recognition that our services are worthy of membership.
Perhaps one of the most significant changes we made this year was the removal of passwords to our prevention video series. This decision enabled hundreds of families to access our videos and the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s series in our “Prevention Video of the Month” program. This program required us to develop talking points for each video, the appropriate age for viewing and a blog site for parents to leave comments and/or questions. Both our member schools and churches that participated in this program (22 total), also were able to link to our site and provide their parents with monthly notices of the video being shown. The result was that not only did our members receive monthly updates from our site, they along with the faith based community and the school community also received the message from their internet links as well. In addition, the monthly featured video continued to be viewed in concurrent months.
Video of the Month Statistics: December, 2009-April, 2010
December , 2009 Featured Video: “Listen”, 80 viewers
January 2010: 78, February: 75, March: 61, April: 28
Total viewers: 322
January, 2010 Featured Video: “Truth and Choices, Shane’s Story”, 122 viewers
February: 70, March: 35, April: 8
Total viewers: 235
February, 2010 Featured Video: “Deception”, 55 viewers
March: 28, April: 9
Total viewers: 92
March 2010 Featured Video: “Operation Safe Surf”, 41 viewers
Total viewers: 41
April 2010 Featured Video: “Breaking the Code of Silence”, 40 viewers
Web Site Presence
One certifiable way to document proof that The Alliance is recognized as a viable community resource is to look at the number of unique visitors to our web site. From July 2008 through March 2009 there were 9,583 unique visitors to the Alliance website. From July 2009 through March 2010, there were 11,333 unique visitors. In this one year time frame, reflecting an increase in unique visitors by 1,750.
Member at Large Schools, Faith Based & Community Sponsors
Within the past year, The Alliance has added 7 new school districts and private school institutions to its membership base. The Alliance has also added a new category for private schools on our web site. The Pittsburgh Diocese has encouraged its catholic high schools to join the Alliance and as an outcome, seven of our school members are from this new category.
A new category of Alliance members at large is the faith based community with nine new member churches. During this past year, 7 of our church members have offered Alliance programs to their congregations. The Alliance goal is to double this membership category during the 2010-2011 fiscal year.
Member Schools, Faith Based & Community Sponsors 2009-2010
· Ambridge School District
· Avonworth School District
· Beattie Technical School (new)
· Carlynton School District (new)
· Chartiers Valley School District
· Cornell School District
· Deer Lakes School District
· Fox Chapel Area School District
· Mars Area School District
· Montour School District
· Moon Area School District
· North Allegheny School District
· North Hills School District
· Northgate School District
· Pine-Richland School District
· Quaker Valley School District
· Rochester Area School District
· Seneca Valley School District
· Shaler Area School District
· South Fayette School District
· West Mifflin School District (new)
· Bishop Canevin High School
· Central Catholic High School
· North Catholic High School
· Quigley Catholic High School (new) * St. Alexis Parochial School
· St Jospeh Catholic High School (new) * St Sebastian Parochial School (new)
· Sewickley Academy
Faith Based Sponsors
Berkeley Hills Lutheran Church (new)
Fountain Park Church (new)
Memorial Park Church (new)
Northway Christian Community (new)
Saints John & Paul (new)
Saint John Neuman
Saint Richards (new)
Saint Sebastian’s (new)
Saint Mary of the Assumption (new)
Allegheny County District Attorney Pennsylvania Attorney General
North Hills Monthly Magazine UPMC Healthcare
Englewood Sales Giant Eagle Corporation
Gateway Rehabilitation Center Pyramid Healthcare
Wright Automotive Group Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals
Perhaps among the most memorable experiences from this past year were the student leadership workshops and taping of our new video production, “Teen’s Talking”. We have established a tremendous working partnership with Gateway Rehabilitation, The Doorway Counseling Center, and the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s office. And as always, have a much appreciated special relationship with our Allegheny County District Attorney, Steve Zappala, QED Producer, Michael Bartley, our Alliance Board of Directors and the special support we receive from our Advisory board member, Bob Wright.
In addition, we have had the privilege of obtaining the services from our professional panel of experts who have been with us in most every community program we provided. Among this wonderful group of very special individuals are the Teen Challenge counselors and young men in recovery who have shown their courage and strength through the personal stories they have shared dozens of times over. I want to also recognize our three newly appointed Alliance board members, Nicole Kurash, Mike Manko and Josie Morgano, who have not only been generous of their time but have made a significant impact when addressing the concerns of parents during the course of our programs. They have made my job so much easier. Also key to the success we have known can be attributed to our Outreach Specialist, Kay Christ and Office Manager, Patti Ferraro. Kay has been an outstanding assistant who consistently demonstrates her sincerity, hard work, and compassion despite the difficult and challenging tasks we routinely encounter. Patti has also demonstrated her professionalism with the office details that in years past have had a tendency to bog me down.
Our Alliance Board President, Al Wille and Vice President, Tom Swan have been most influential in the progress of our growth, the conviction of our purpose and the vision of our mission. Needless to say, the strength of our organization can only be realized by the people we work with. I indeed am grateful.
Special Achievements 2009-2010
- Hired two employees: Alliance Outreach Specialist and Office Manager with funding from the Grable Foundation
- Secured grant from the Pennsylvania Attorney General to collaborate on the “Video of the Month” Program
- “Video of the Month” Program : 25 school districts and faith based institutions participated
- Annual 7th Grade Poster Contest held in February: 19 schools participated
- Alliance 7th Grade Student Leadership Workshop held in March: 15 schools participated
- Alliance 8th, 9th, and 10th Grade Student Workshop held in April: 20 schools participated
- Held two fundraisers: “Blast to the Past” in August and a Trap Shoot in April
- Nine local faith based institutions became Alliance members
- Increased Alliance School District and/or Private School Members from 22 to 29
- Submitted 4 Alliance articles for the local North Hills Monthly Magazine
- Establishing a partnership with local Pediatricians and Orthodontists to feature Alliance materials in their offices
- Obtained commitment from member schools and faith based institutions to link their website to the Alliance’s
- Created monthly “talking points” for parents for all of the Alliance and Attorney General’s Educational Videos.
- Established a unique blog site for parents to post comments and/or questions
- Produced Alliance’s newest educational video, “Teen’s Talking” to be premiered in the fall of 2010
- Upgraded Alliance web site to include a special category for the private school sector
- Created a new community “flip brochure”
- Created an ”Important Tips for Parents” fact sheet
- Created a post survey and testimonial form that was used at each program, presentation and workshop
- Established an Alliance Advisory Board
Calendar of Programs and Events
During the past year, The Alliance has held the following key community events:
- * 2 major fundraisers and 5 basket raffles * 2 Town Hall Meetings
- * 5 parent/5th grade student programs * 7 parent/middle school student programs
- * 2 high school student programs * 1 faculty in-service programs
- * 2 pre-open house parent programs * 6 community/business leader presentations
- “Blast to the Past” Fundraiser, August 14, 2009
- Catholic Diocese Presentation, August 25, 2009
- Dorseyville Middle School Pre-open House, September 24, 2009
- Chartiers Valley Middle School Pre-open House, October 7, 2009
- West Mifflin 5th grade parent/Student Program, October 8, 2009
- Bishop Canevin 9th grade Student Presentation, October 14, 2009
- Fountain Park Church Middle/High School Parent/Student Program, October 18, 2009
- Rich-Mar Rotary Presentation, October 20, 2009
- Central Catholic, Oakland Catholic, Ellis Schools Town Hall Meeting, October 22, 2009
- North Hills School District 5th/6th Grade Parent/Student Program, October 28, 2009
- Alliance General Meeting, October 30, 2009
- West View Crime Watch Presentation, November 9, 2009
- Saints John & Paul Parish 5th – 8th Grade Parent/Student Program, November 12, 2009
- Giant Eagle Corporation Presentation, December 10, 2009
- North Catholic High School Faculty In-service Presentation, January 25, 2010
- Northway Christian Community Church Parent/Student Program, January 31, 2010
- Alliance Poster Contest for 7th grade Students, February, 2010
- National Character Education Conference Exhibitor, March 3, 2010
- Saint Richard’s Parish Middle/High School Parent/Student Program, March 7, 2010
- Pine-Richland School District 5th Grade Parent/Student Program, March 15, 2010
- Fox Chapel Area School District 5th Grade Parent/Student Program, March 8, 2010
- Alliance 7th Grade Student Leadership Workshop, March 26, 2010
- Alliance 8th,9th,10th Grade Student Program and filming of Alliance Video, April 9, 2010
- Saint John Neumann Parish High School Parent/Student Program, April 11, 2010
- Alliance Trap Shoot Fundraiser, April 17, 2010
- Saint Sebastian’s School Parent/Student Program, April 20, 2010
- Saint Joseph High School Town Hall Meeting, April 21, 2010
- Quigley Catholic High School Student Program, April 22, 2010
- Saint John Neumann Parish Middle School Parent/Student Program, April 25, 2010
- Alliance Award Luncheon, June 5, 2010
Schools and Churches Conducting "Listen" Video Programs
This was my third time going through your program. I really like it and think it is beneficial to all who it is presented to. On the other hand, I would really like the young people who are in Teen Challenge to be more involved. Of course, this is dependent upon many things - their personalities, how open they are, etc. But one year, there was an exceptional young man who told us where he got drugs (from medicine cabinets) and how he and his buddies used them and so much information that I could have listened to him forever. I would like to hear less from the "experts" and more from the users.
I know the videos made an impact with my daughter, she had a lot of questions when we got home. One suggestion would be to explain to the kids why we clap for the recovering addicts. She was confused, the kids do not know what they go through to stop talking the drug. I think the kids need an explanation at the program.
Excellent program--my son and I had a great discussion on the way home and he was especially affected by the video and the testimonies of the young men from the recovery program. Thank you for presenting such a comprehensive program.
I had taken my older son to the presentation 3 years ago, so it was a review for me. But, it was such a valuable presentation for my 5th grade son this year. I am glad we attended.
I saw the presentation with my older son 2 or 3 years ago. Very useful to students and parents.
I think the video was wonderfully done and an absolute great idea to have the younger children (5,6,7th grade) see this movie. I also appreciate the young men who willingly told their stories. Thanks for all you do!
I thought it was an excellent program for both children and adults.
When I viewed this with my son 4 years ago, the visual items/paraphernalia (sp) for everyone to view. That would be what I would recommend. Overall, it was very informative and I wish all schools have the opportunity to share with the public.
My child is in sixth grade, so I can't speak to question #4 above. That said, it did seem to be worthwhile to bring this topic up, in a serious, controlled environment, before he encountered it on his own somewhere.
I greatly appreciate the courage it took for the recovering addicts, and the suffering families to be present and speak at the presentation.
Thank you for all you do to educate parents and students. I felt the program was excellent.
Excellent program. I really admired the young men that had the courage to tell their stories of abuse. I am absolutely stunned at the courage of the individuals who have lost their children to drug use.
I plan to continue watching the online videos with my daughter and my son when he gets into 5th grade.
Every school across the region should be connected to this Alliance! Our community finally has a coalition that is making a difference!!!!
I wish the parents would have heard more from the addicts. It was very brave of them to open up to the public like they did. One question that I wanted to hear more about was what percentages of all addicts that go through rehab are successful. I would also like to know which gender is more than likely to become an addict. I also think officer Scott was a very valuable resource to have on the panel. His knowledge of the district helps us all to hear what is really going on in the school district.
Perhaps look at doing a follow-up program for those who saw it once already and offer it to 7th and 8th graders s a reinforcement.
Wonderfully compelling program. Please give credit and sincere appreciation back to all those on the panel, especially those recovering!!
2010-2011 Projections and Upcoming Events
1. Theme: “Teen’s Talking: are we prepared to listen”?
2. Video of the Month Prevention Series: Kickoff October 1st after premier of new production, “Teen’s Talking”. The Alliance will continue to provide the download and links for this program free of passwords or user names. Project a significant increase in viewer numbers as we continue to include more schools and churches participation in this program. Consequently, this will also significantly increase the unique visitors to the Alliance web site as well.
3. With the assistance of our outreach specialist, we will increase our member at large faith based members, school districts and private school institutions. Project an increase of 50% for faith based and 20% in school memberships.
4. The development of a new community business program. Area businesses that make a $25 donation will receive a window sign and Alliance web presence indicating their support as an “Alliance Friend”. Projected kick off for this program: summer 2010.
5. Professional Sponsor Program: A campaign will begin during the 2010 summer months to reach out to area family physicians, oral surgeons and orthodontists to become an Alliance professional sponsor. Professionals that make a $200 donation will receive a packet of Alliance materials for their office and a direct link to their web site.
6. Administrator’s Training: to be held on September 14, 2010 at The Chadwick, Wexford. School and Church Administrators who attend will receive an update on Alliance technology i.e. electronic post program surveys, video of the month program, use of community calendar and other technical support issues as they apply to specific member needs.
7. Resource Fair and “Teen’s Talking” Video Premier. This event will take place on September 28th at the Chadwick, Wexford. Late spring/early summer, we will begin contacting school and faith based parent organizations, school and church administrators, business leaders, local government, school and church faculty members and the community at large for their support and attendance. Area community agencies will be contacted to renew their Alliance sponsorship ($100) and purchase a booth at this fair ($100) for a total of $200. Nonprofit agencies that cannot afford this fee will be given special consideration. The morning will begin with the resource fair followed by a brief general meeting and premier of our newest video production; “Teen’s Talking: Sexting, Drinking, Drugs”. Following lunch, attendees will have the option to stay for a one hour round table discussion with one of our three professional guests.
8. Development of a new program guide for the school year 2010-2011. School and faith based administrators will receive the new program of Alliance services during our renewal campaign, spring 2010. We kindly request that each of our current members make a commitment to renew membership at their earliest convenience. School renewal fees will remain the same as in previous years. Our faith based members will be asked to renew for an amount of $200/year.
9. 7th Grade Poster Contest. Currently, plans are being made to make changes to the time line for the contest and award luncheon for 2011. The projected start for the contest will occur during the month of March. Also under consideration: students and their guests would be invited to attend the award luncheon at the beginning of the following school year, September, 2011.
10. Alliance marketing materials: we will make upgrades on current marketing materials i.e. post program survey and facts for parents. We will also produce a new “frequently asked parent questions” postcard that will offer links from the Alliance web site to other community resources.
11. The Alliance, having established an Advisory Board, will be seeking individuals with an interest to serve in this capacity. Tentative plans are being made to hold one meeting/year with the Advisory Board to provide them an update on Alliance programs and organizational issues. Please contact me if you are interested in this opportunity.
Respectfully submitted by,
Debra M. Kehoe, Executive Director
The Alliance Against Drugs
April 30, 2010