June 7, 2010 Minutes

Pittsfield Drug and Alcohol Meeting Minutes

6:30 pm at the Pittsfield Youth Workshop

 June 7, 2010


In attendance: Zach Powers, Officer John Webber, Sarah Sadowski, Chief Robert Wharem


Meeting called to order at 6:30 pm.    


The goal of tonight’s meeting was to review the community forum data, discuss new opportunities and take stock of how to incorporate the identified community needs with the remaining tasks for the CRCPC grant.


Please see the Power Point presentation June PDAC Meeting for more details.


I.                   NH Charitable Grant 

a.       The group reviewed what has been spent to-date: $1,650 for health supplies and $425 for Parent Group.

                                                                          i.       Zach has secured up to four full scholarships to Teen Institute so the $500 allocated to Teen Institute may need to be re-appropriated.

                                                                        ii.      Since MADD NH has ceased public education efforts and MADD MA is unable to find an appropriate speaker, we have not booked a speaker for June. As we saw in the community forums, many parents would like to bring a speaker who will focus on bullying and safety as well as an anti-drugs and alcohol message. There is still $200 for a speaker.

                                                                      iii.      The cost of the Fatal Vision goggles has gone up since last fall; the price is now $1,050, a $275 increase. The Chief will be purchasing later this week.

                                                                      iv.      In light of new information from CRCPC on evidence-based programs and the possible counter-productive outcomes of car crash simulations, combined with the difficulty coordinating a regional training, the Every 15 Minutes money ($1,200) may need to be re-appropriated

                                                                        v.      Now that You’re 16 will be starting in the fall with a Pittsfield Police Officer at the school and Dick Bertolami as the contact person


II.                New Opportunities

a.       PDAC has brought in over $12,260 in new opportunities this month:

                                                                          i.      4 full Teen Institute Scholarships (thanks Zach!) worth $3,260 to cultivate youth leadership

                                                                        ii.      A Media Power Youth 5 day training that will help youth design, produce and star in their own Public Service Announcement $7,000

                                                                      iii.      A technical assistance grant from the Center for Excellence that will pay for Board development ($1,500) and match the half scholarship Sarah received to attend the School for Prevention Studies next week ($500) for a total of $2,000



III.             Board Training

a.       With the funds from Center for Excellence and the $280 earmarked in the CRCPC budget, we now have $1,780 for Board Development. The group had a brief conversation about the benefits of training as a Board, especially in regards to volunteer recruitment and identifying the future direction of the group. The Chief pointed out the importance of documenting the progress that has been made to help prepare for future funding opportunities and show the relevance of the group.

b.       Attached is a sample proposal that all present deemed not only too expensive but too time consuming as well. However, the consultant would be willing to modify the training as needed.


IV.              Forums

a.       Evaluations: All participants rated the events as “good” or “outstanding”. Approximately 20% expressed dissatisfaction with the discussion format, citing the need for “more kid voices” or “didn’t get to talk about everything”. The group had a brief conversation about how to improve the discussion format, it was agreed that an in-house facilitator worked and with more experience the conversation may flow better.

b.      Needs: Five themes ran through out each of the forums regarding community needs:

                                                                          i.      Media literacy

                                                                        ii.      Parent education especially in regards to bullying and online safety,

                                                                      iii.      Supporting what already works: non sport alternatives for youth and the after school programs

                                                                      iv.      Law enforcement: promoting achievements, door-to-door campaign or citizens patrol (perhaps better called a Crime Watch patrol)

                                                                        v.      Peer support (parent networking, Safe Homes, “quit with a friend”)


V.                 How best to respond to community needs:

a.       A series of articles in the Sun “Did you Know?” with local resources for parents

b.      Continue to promote Safe Homes, pledge drive at National Night Out, Balloon Rally, etc. Print the directory for fall distribution through the school

c.       A speaker for both youth and parents who can touch on a few different public health issues, bullying, online safety and how to tell if youth may be involved with drugs or alcohol. We discussed having a speaker come for 9th grade orientation during the day and stay for an evening presentation that would be open to the entire community. Otherwise, we will need to have parents “sign up” so we know enough will attend to justify the cost

d.      Media Power Youth to begin this summer, will make a PSA that then can be shown at events like the Sports Banquet

e.      Over the Counter information kits to parents from CRCPC, Sarah will contact Shannon to order

f.        The Chief will be holding neighborhood safety forums in conjunction with PDAC and Safe Routes to School


VI.              Remaining activities for CRCPC

a.       Safe Homes Directory

b.      Publicize enforcement activities

c.       Citizens Patrol (perhaps better named Crime Watch)


VII.           Other news

a.       The Chief reported 8 arrests during the 1st of two checkpoints to be held this year. The police made stops over Memorial Day Weekend and found open container violations, operators under the influence and drug offenses. A press release will be released by the department shortly. Half the businesses in town have been compliance checked

b.      The Chief is also starting a One Voice group, inspired by what was previously Dover Youth to Youth (Y2Y). The Chief reported on the presentations made by Silas St. James’ class on how to improve the town and there are a few youth interested in forming a group similar to Y2Y. The Chief described the Bridging Program and will be hosting a meeting to identify next steps. The police department also is now on Twitter, a great way to get the word out about enforcement activities

c.       National Night Out is August 3rd. The group declined to order anything from the website

d.      Project Alert is wrapping on Thursday, hooray to Anne Cote for an interesting first year!


The meeting was adjourned at 7:30 pm.


The next PDAC meeting will be Monday, June 28th at 6:30 pm at the Pittsfield Youth Workshop.


Respectfully submitted,

Sarah Sadowski