Programs utilized by the Substance Use

Prevention Program

Information Dissemination

  • Parent presentations:
    • How to Talk With Your Kids About Alcohol, Marijuana and Other Drugs
    • Youth Marijuana Prevention (presented by Idea Marketing and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment)
  • Parent newsletters: monthly submissions of relevant prevention information to DPS middle and high school parent newsletters.
  • Mailing of resources: Parents in several schools (depending on funding source) receive the DenverRAP Parent Toolkit and information from Speak Now Colorado yearly.


Prevention Education

  • Life Skills Training Program: A research-validated prevention program that reduces the risks of alcohol, tobacco, drug abuse by targeting social and psychological factors that promote the initiation of substance use and other risky behaviors.
  • Marijuana Education Initiative’s Impact Awareness Program (MEI): MEI engages students in reality-based conversations about the common uses of marijuana, health and behavior risks associated with marijuana use and abuse, and informed decision making about marijuana use.
  • Learning2Breathe: A mindfulness-based curriculum created for classroom or group settings that is intended to strengthen attention and emotion regulation, and help participants integrate mindfulness into daily life.
  • Signs of Suicide: Helps to decrease suicide and suicide attempts by increasing student knowledge and adaptive attitudes about depression, encouraging personal help-seeking and/or help-seeking on behalf of a friend.
  • Strengthening Families Program: The Strengthening Families Program is an evidence-based family skills training program designated to increase resilience and reduce risk factors for behavioral, emotional, academic, and social problems in youth 10-14 years old.


Environmental Strategies

  • Sources of Strength: A mental health wellness prevention project that utilizes the power of peer social networks to increase help seeking behaviors and connections between peers and caring adults with a focus on Hope, Help and Strength.
  • Random Acts of Kindness: RAK teaches students social emotional skills to help students resolve conflicts peacefully, manage emotions, and feel and show empathy for others.
  • Gay/Straight Alliance (GSA): GSAs provide support, build community, and create action for youth and their school community; research has shown that the presence of a GSA can help make schools safer for LGBTIQ students.
  • Trauma Informed Systems of Care Training/ Trauma Informed Improvement Plans:
    • Training for school staff to address the impact of childhood trauma on current behaviors and the link to substance abuse and other risky behaviors.
    • A trauma-informed practice (TIP) organizational assessment tool which allows a school to assess current policies and practices through a “trauma lens”.
    • Technical assistance for a school implementation team to developing an improvement plan for policies and practices through a trauma informed lens.


 Problem Identification and Referral

  • Teen Intervene: Teen Intervene is an evidence-based brief intervention designed to help young people who are beginning to struggle with alcohol and/or drugs.
  • Coping Cat/Cat Project: Coping Cat is a manualized treatment program (Tier 2 or 3) for youth with anxiety disorders and/or social phobia.
  • Law Enforcement Advocate Program: The goal of the program is to increase the public perception of the policy, promote youth and family advocacy through mentoring, and maintain public safety.