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CPASA expands outreach with social media

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2013 7:44 p.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2013 8:01 p.m. CDT

PRINCETON — The Community Partners Against Substance Abuse (CPASA) coalition is developing its use of social media as an outreach in its battle against substance abuse among area young people.

About 50 people attended Tuesday morning’s CPASA meeting at the Bureau/Putnam County Health Department in Princeton, at which CPASA member Terry Madsen talked about the CPASA website, at www.cpasa.org, as well as the CPASA Facebook page.

CPASA’s web page offers a variety of information, including projects and programs, a question/answer section on signs of abuse or addiction and treatment options, as well as information on different substances and also available resources, Madsen said.

As detailed on the CPASA web page, the state of Illinois is encouraging partnershipsaround the state of organizations and groups, like CPASA, who share similar missions and goals, Madsen said. The Illinois National Guard has partnered with CPASA and other similar coalitions to form the statewide Illinois Coalition Against Substance Abuse.

Looking at CPASA’s Facebook page, Madsen said there is interesting information posted on the Facebook page, as well as messaging opportunities. The CPASA page currently has 39 friends and hopefully that number will increase as more people become aware of the page, he said.

In other discussion at Tuesday’s meeting, CPASA coordinator Dawn Conerton said CPASA is expanding its Prescription Pill and Drug Disposal (P2D2) program to include the communities of Ladd and Walnut. CPASA had previously partnered with law enforcement agencies to establish permanent collection boxes at the Spring Valley Police Department, Princeton Police Department, Putnam County Sheriff’s Department and the Bureau County Sheriff’s Department. Since starting the program in July 2010, the local P2D2 program has collected about 2,800 pounds of unwanted prescription drugs for proper disposal, Conerton said.

The CPASA area of Putnam and Bureau counties is unique with six prescription drug collection boxes, which is great for an area this size, Conerton said, adding some states don’t have any P2D2 program or collection boxes.

The next P2D2 collection day is set for April 27, as part of the national Take Back Day. Hopefully people from the neighboring communities will also take their unwanted prescription medicines to the drop-off boxes in Bureau and Putnam counties, Conerton said.

In other business, Conerton reviewed other upcoming events, including a Beverage Sellers and Servers Education Training program set for March 20 at the Bureau/Putnam County Health Department, the Teen Showcase program April 11 at the Seneca Oak Ridge Golf Course for area teens, and the national “We Choose project” set for May 12-18, which will be done locally.

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