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Prevention is probably the most important of the four areas of focus for Youth & Family Services. Programming and events focus on preventing and educating about what are generally thought of as negative behaviors, such as substance use, criminal or delinquent behavior, and generally unhealthy practices.

The vast majority of our prevention work is done through the "This is Us, Portland" Prevention Council, which is a volunteer group of local residents, businesses, and stakeholders. Their prevention work is focused on educating students, parents, and residents through presentations and discussions. This work extends to the local business owners who have a stake in creating a healthy environment where they can thrive.

Portland YFS Prevention 9-7-2022.png

Courage to Speak

The first presentation from the "This is Us, Portland" Prevention Council is with Ginger and Larry Katz, founders of the Courage to Speak Foundation. Ginger is also the author of Sunny's Story, A Drug Prevention Book. They started the Foundation after their son died of an opioid overdose.

Portland High School Library

95 High St, Portland

April 20, 2022

7:00 - 8:30 pm

During this in-person talk, Ginger and Larry will talk about their son's story, and cover topics such as signs of drug use, communicating with youth, how to teach refusal skills, and more! We want this to be interactive, and there will be a question and answer session and a book signing.

Speaking of books, the first 25 people to RSVP and attend the event will receive a signed copy of Sunny's Story.

RSVP is encouraged, but not required for this free event!


"How Communities Can Maximize New Resources to Solve the Opioid Crisis"

The button to the right links to a recent webinar "How Communities Can Maximize New Resources to Solve the Opioid Crisis" presented by Project Opioid on Thursday, March 31, 2022.

​​Project Opioid has additional webinars coming up on:

  • April 28 @ 4pm How Law Enforcement Can Help Solve the Opioid Crisis

  • May 19 @ 1pm Creating Best Practice Community Solutions to the Overdose Crisis

Sunny's Story in the
6th Grade

Ginger and Larry will also be visiting Portland's 6th grade class at Brownstone Intermediate School on April 21, 2022 for a discussion of Ginger's book: Sunny's Story. Youth & Family Services and the "This is Us, Portland" Prevention Council purchased a copy of Sunny's Story for each 6th grader. Matt Fox, the health teacher at Brownstone, and the 6th grade team of teachers will read and discuss the book with their students in preparation for the assembly on the 21st.

We hope that some of the parents of our 6th graders will also join us for the evening presentation on the 20th.

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