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Eligible Coalitions Are Encouraged To Apply for Drug-Free Community Grants

2/25/2002:   The Drug-Free Communities Support Program will award approximately 70 new grants to community coalitions for fiscal year (FY) 2002. Applications must be postmarked by April 24, 2002.

Begun in 1998, the program awards grants of up to $100,000 each for the first 12-month period. Each coalition grantee must match the grant 100% in nonfederal funds or in-kind contributions. Funding for subsequent years depends on grantee performance, availability of funds, and other criteria established at the time of the award. In fact, of the 468 grants made since 1998, 463 programs are currently active.

The major goals of the program are to:
  • Reduce substance abuse among youth—and, over time, among adults—by addressing the factors in the community that increase the risk of substance abuse and the factors that minimize that risk; and
  • Establish and strengthen collaboration among communities; federal, state, and tribal governments; and private nonprofit agencies to support the efforts of community coalitions to prevent and reduce substance abuse among youth.

To be eligible for a grant, a community coalition must meet at least the following criteria:
  • Have, as a principal mission, the reduction of substance abuse among youth;
  • Demonstrate that the coalition has been established, and its members have worked together, for no less than six months prior to the application;
  • Have a five-year strategic plan; and
  • Represent the targeted community and include representatives of youth; parents; the business community; media; schools; youth-serving organizations; law enforcement agencies; religious or fraternal organizations; civic and volunteer groups; health care professionals; state, local, or tribal governmental agencies with expertise in the field of substance abuse; and other organizations involved in reducing substance abuse.

The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) administers the program for the Office of National Drug Control Policy. In December 2001, the program was reauthorized for another five years. The budget for FY 2002 increased funding of the program by $10.6 million over FY 2001, to a total of more than $50 million. By FY 2007, the reauthorization will increase the program’s funding to nearly $100 million.

Need more information, ideas for projects, or the name of a current grantee in your area? Go to www.ojjdp.ncjrs.org. This OJJDP website includes answers to Frequently Asked Questions, the application package, and information on workshops that provide assistance, training, and technical support for coalitions planning to submit applications. Agencies interested in applying for grants may wish to join an existing coalition in their area. Links are provided to information about forming community networks. For example, click on the link to Assessing Drug Abuse Within and Across Communities, or go to www.samsha.gov for descriptions of model substance abuse prevention programs. On the lower right of the OJJDP website listed above are links to other organizations that fund similar programs.

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