Our Vision

A community of healing, hope, and optimal health.

Our Mission

The mission of the Get SMART West Baltimore Drug Free Community Coalition is to build capacity in communities of color to eliminate, delay, and reduce, alcohol and marijuana use among youth and over time adults.

Our Goals

The goals of the coalition are:

  1. To prevent and reduce underage alcohol, marijuana, and other drug use/abuse among youth (age 18 and under) and
  2. To reduce substance abuse among adults by addressing the factors in the community that increase the risk of substance abuse including the social determinants of health.

The Get SMART West Baltimore Drug Free Community Coalition (Get SMART DFC) is an initiative with a vision of bringing together re-purposed education, best practice strategies, resources, and support to the youth and families who reside in West Baltimore in order create a happy, healthy, and safe community.

We represent a cross-section of our community – parents, youth, educators, health-care professionals, religious/fraternal organizations, law enforcement, civic/volunteer organizations, substance abuse organizations, media, schools, youth-serving organizations,  the business community, non-profit organizations, and representatives of city, county, state and federal government.

In 2016, Morgan State University School of Community Health and Policy received a five-year grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to implement the Get SMART West Baltimore Drug Free Community Coalition. This grant will help establish and strengthen collaboration to support the efforts of our community coalition that will work together to prevent and reduce alcohol and substance use among youth and over time, reduce abuse among adults.

Get SMART West Baltimore Drug Community Coalition addresses policies, practices, and programs in our two current priority areas: underage alcohol and marijuana use.

The plans going forward involves the implementation of the “Strategic Prevention Framework” as outlined by SAMHSA to address community level and environmental level change. Some of the selected strategies for community level change will include: provide support, enhance skills, assess and reduce significant barriers, build capacity, and advocacy for policy change. We value the concept that community lies in the heart of public health.

Environmental level change encompasses, but are not limited to, alcohol and substance use awareness campaigns, reducing underage social access to alcohol from commercial and social providers, increasing enforcement of drinking and driving laws, and promoting responsible service of alcohol and increasing enforcement of alcohol-control policies.

Get SMART West Baltimore Drug Community Coalition works through committees to accomplish our goals. We work with school districts, parents, health-care workers, businesses, law enforcement officers and others to reduce the access and supply of alcohol and drugs in the community. In addition, our core efforts involve educating youth, families, teachers, and others about the consequences and realities of alcohol and substance abuse.

We do this by:

  • Reaching local students through interactive prevention programs;
  • Holding community forums on youth substance use and abuse;
  • Creating campaigns to positively influence parents and youth to make healthy, smart decisions;
  • Collecting and disposing of unused prescription drugs;
  • Working to keep alcohol-licensed retailers from serving alcohol to youth;
  • and many other strategies.

Alcohol and substance use are often used as a coping mechanism to solve and/or escape problems. The Get SMART West Baltimore Drug Free Community Coalition aims to help build capacity and provide West Baltimore with the resources necessary for community-level change.

 

Alcohol and substance use has a major impact on individuals, families, and communities. The effects of alcohol and substance abuse are cumulative, significantly contributing to costly social, physical, mental, and public health problems. This is a crucial time for Baltimore to increase the awareness of alcohol and substance use within the community, especially among youth.

 

Due to community-level trauma, a plethora of drug overdoses, and an array of mental health concerns, the Morgan State University School of Community Health and Policy is in a unique position to impact community level change that focuses on improving the health and well-being of communities. We are committed to reducing underage drinking and substance abuse among youth ~ the future of our tomorrow’s.  Anchored in the university and rooted in the community, we share a commitment to community-based capacity building.

+ WHO WE ARE

The Get SMART West Baltimore Drug Free Community Coalition (Get SMART DFC) is an initiative with a vision of bringing together re-purposed education, best practice strategies, resources, and support to the youth and families who reside in West Baltimore in order create a happy, healthy, and safe community.

We represent a cross-section of our community – parents, youth, educators, health-care professionals, religious/fraternal organizations, law enforcement, civic/volunteer organizations, substance abuse organizations, media, schools, youth-serving organizations,  the business community, non-profit organizations, and representatives of city, county, state and federal government.

In 2016, Morgan State University School of Community Health and Policy received a five-year grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to implement the Get SMART West Baltimore Drug Free Community Coalition. This grant will help establish and strengthen collaboration to support the efforts of our community coalition that will work together to prevent and reduce alcohol and substance use among youth and over time, reduce abuse among adults.

+ WHAT WE DO

Get SMART West Baltimore Drug Community Coalition addresses policies, practices, and programs in our two current priority areas: underage alcohol and marijuana use.

The plans going forward involves the implementation of the “Strategic Prevention Framework” as outlined by SAMHSA to address community level and environmental level change. Some of the selected strategies for community level change will include: provide support, enhance skills, assess and reduce significant barriers, build capacity, and advocacy for policy change. We value the concept that community lies in the heart of public health.

Environmental level change encompasses, but are not limited to, alcohol and substance use awareness campaigns, reducing underage social access to alcohol from commercial and social providers, increasing enforcement of drinking and driving laws, and promoting responsible service of alcohol and increasing enforcement of alcohol-control policies.

Get SMART West Baltimore Drug Community Coalition works through committees to accomplish our goals. We work with school districts, parents, health-care workers, businesses, law enforcement officers and others to reduce the access and supply of alcohol and drugs in the community. In addition, our core efforts involve educating youth, families, teachers, and others about the consequences and realities of alcohol and substance abuse.

We do this by:

  • Reaching local students through interactive prevention programs;
  • Holding community forums on youth substance use and abuse;
  • Creating campaigns to positively influence parents and youth to make healthy, smart decisions;
  • Collecting and disposing of unused prescription drugs;
  • Working to keep alcohol-licensed retailers from serving alcohol to youth;
  • and many other strategies.
+ WHY WE EXIST

Alcohol and substance use are often used as a coping mechanism to solve and/or escape problems. The Get SMART West Baltimore Drug Free Community Coalition aims to help build capacity and provide West Baltimore with the resources necessary for community-level change.

 

Alcohol and substance use has a major impact on individuals, families, and communities. The effects of alcohol and substance abuse are cumulative, significantly contributing to costly social, physical, mental, and public health problems. This is a crucial time for Baltimore to increase the awareness of alcohol and substance use within the community, especially among youth.

 

Due to community-level trauma, a plethora of drug overdoses, and an array of mental health concerns, the Morgan State University School of Community Health and Policy is in a unique position to impact community level change that focuses on improving the health and well-being of communities. We are committed to reducing underage drinking and substance abuse among youth ~ the future of our tomorrow’s.  Anchored in the university and rooted in the community, we share a commitment to community-based capacity building.

OUR TEAM

Dr. Lorece Edwards

Project Director

Latosha Brooks

Project Coordinator