4 Years In, NCADA’s Substance-Related Counseling Program is Helping Hundreds of St. Louis-Area Teens

By on December 5, 2018

From St. Louis Public Radio:  In the midst of a nationwide opioid epidemic among U.S. adults, one organization in the St. Louis region is seeing some more positive trends among younger people when it comes to substance use.

On Monday, NCADA announced that of the nearly 600 St. Louis-area adolescents who have participated in its Transitional Counseling Program since 2014, more than 75 percent successfully abstain from substance use throughout their enrollment in the grant-funded program, and more than 65 percent are still abstaining six months later.

“That’s pretty significant,” executive director Nichole Dawsey said of the numbers while talking with host Don Marsh on St. Louis on the Air. “The biggest area of impact that we have seen – and this is both anecdotally and in the quantitative data – is the improved relationships between teens and their caregivers as a direct result of this program.”

Nisha Patel, assistant superintendent for secondary education in the Fox C-6 School District, has seen positive outcomes in her own district, which has partnered with NCADA for four years now.

“We have a 90 percent [TCP] completion rate,” Patel said. “So when students come to me for making poor choices, absolutely they have consequences, but our biggest goal is, ‘How do we transition them back into school to be successful in life and get through high school?’”

TCP has proved pivotal in that regard, she said.

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