FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Iowa and the Iowa Department of Public Health Partner for Substance Abuse and Problem Gambling Prevention
This is the second year of the Improving Tomorrow: Prevention Focused Mentoring Program
DES MOINES, IA, Sept. 29, 2021 – Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Iowa (BBBSCI) will support the state of Iowa’s goal of aiding in the prevention of the use and abuse of alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs as well as problem gambling.
For the second year, BBBSCI will provide crucial substance abuse prevention training aimed at empowering volunteers and the youth they serve in Polk and Warren Counties. The Iowa Department of Public Health’s, Improving Tomorrow: Prevention Focused Mentoring, grant-funded program is essential in providing education, coaching and empowerment activities for matches to discuss together.
Eighty three (83) matches in BBBSCI’s Community-Based Mentoring Program will receive substance abuse trainings led by BBBSCI Substance Abuse Prevention Mentoring Coordinator- Tiara S. Hanks, LMSW, IADC. For BBBSCI Chief Executive Officer Renee Hardman, the partnership with the Iowa Department of Public Health is a natural fit.
“Improving Tomorrow: Prevention Focused Mentoring continues to create a bridge for youth to have safe space to ask questions, and to share concerns and experiences in order to avoid the pitfalls of gateway activities,” said Hardman.
Youth served by BBBSCI often do not have someone in their life to be a role model and to provide them with the support, encouragement, and tools to avoid risky behaviors such as substance use and problem gambling. Training volunteers to have these conversations and making supportive efforts toward prevention helps to empower the youth to do more than “just say no” when encountering risky situations, persons, places, or their peers.
About Your Life Iowa
For additional information about substance abuse prevention and problem gambling, please visit the Iowa Department of Public Health’s Your Life Iowa website: https://yourlifeiowa.org/.
About Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Iowa:
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Iowa (BBBSCI) is the premier mentoring organization in Central Iowa. BBBSCI’s mission is to create and support one-to-one mentoring relationships that ignite the power and promise of youth. For more than 50 years, BBBSCI has been dedicated to serving youth (LITTLES), ages 5-18, through professionally supported mentoring relationships with adults (BIGS) in Central Iowa. In 2020, BBBSCI received the Big Brothers Big Sisters of America Quality Service Award for excellence in its 1-to-1 mentoring program. Please visit www.bbbsia.org or call 515-288-9025 for further information.