Piedmont Mediation now offering Clean Teens Program
BY DEBBIE PAGE
Parents, schools and courts have a new tool to help teens engaging in high-risk behaviors involving drugs or alcohol back on a healthier positive path with Piedmont Mediation’s Clean Teens Program.
Susan Smith, youth director and a certified district criminal court mediator at Piedmont Mediation, said the program is based on “Prime for Life,” which helps teens develop the attitudes, beliefs and understanding necessary to reduce their risk for any type of alcohol or drug problem.
The Prime for Life program (https://primeforlife.org) also creates “a unique self-assessment experience to help people be more aware of what they value, what they are risking, and how to protect the things that mean the most in their lives.”
The focus includes prevention and intervention components provided in a safe atmosphere in which participants can explore how their choices regarding substance use can affect their lives.
Since people have reasons for their beliefs and behaviors, creating new understanding, self-evaluation, and support for examining their actions and choices relating to substance misuse is important for successful change.
Smith said 14 teens are currently signed up for the sessions beginning in January.
“We get referrals through district criminal court, through schools, and through attorneys. We are really excited that it’s starting,” she explained.
Amanda Patterson of Step by Step Counseling in Mooresville will lead six weekly 90-minute sessions. There is no fee for the program, and concerned parents can also enroll their teens.
The program is designed to alter drinking and/or drug use behaviors by changing teens’ beliefs, attitudes and perceptions of risk related to drugs and alcohol misuse. They will come away with tools to help them reduce their risk of substance use problems throughout their lives.
The evidence-based program, geared to 15- to 18-year-old youths, is led by licensed professional instructors. Participants include court involved or law enforcement assistance diversion youths as well as student-athletes who fail drug testing. Other candidates include teens found under the influence or in possession of drugs or alcohol.
New class session series will begin on January 9, February 20, April 3, and May 15. The program is funded through the Juvenile Crime Prevention Council, United Way, ABC funds, and grant monies.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
To learn more, call Piedmont Mediation at 704-873-7624 or visit the organization’s website at www.piedmontmediation.com