25 Years of Prevention and Community Collaborations
This short video highlighting our timeline and successes was presented at our Annual Meeting as we celebrated our 25th Anniversary in the presence of our many community partners, coalition and board members.
Since its inception in 1986, the Woonsocket Prevention Coalition (WPC), formerly the Woonsocket Task Force on Substance Abuse (WTFSA), has played a pivotal role in identifying and addressing the issue of substance abuse in the city of Woonsocket. Our planning process begins with our Board of Directors and is carried out at the subcommittee level by our coalition partners. Please click here to read about our coalition sectors and members. We are located in downtown Woonsocket at City Hall.
Mailing address City Hall * P.O.Box B., Woonsocket RI, 02895. Physical address 169 Main Street, Woonsocket, RI 02895.
The WPC has evolved into an effective, organized coalition of community leaders representing all sectors of concern throughout Woonsocket with a clear and defined mission: to develop, implement and advocate for effective, community-based prevention initiatives.
We act as a catalyst, uniting the public and privte sectors to assist in the development of proactive efforts and programs dealing with prevention. During our twenty-five year history, we have worked closely with the Mayor's office, the Woonsocket City Council, The Woonsocket Education Department, health organizations, community-based organizations, businesses, local and state officials, parent groups, faith-based organizations, youth organizations, and substance abuse prevention, intervention and treatment agencies. The results of these collaborations include a number of signifcant and successful community-weide public awareness efforts and initiatives designed to effect legislation and policy development. As a result, the WPC has continued to assume a leading role in finding effective ways to confront and reduce substance abuse and other risky behaviors in Woonsocket.
Timeline Of Successes
The role of the WPC is to assist the community in reducing substance abuse and other risk factors associated with risky behavior, while increasing protective factors within the community through capacity building strategies. Below is a timeline of some of our successes. We realize that these accomplishments could not have been achieved without the dedication and support of our community partners, board members, school administraters and staff, volunteers, business partners, youth and parents.
1986- Committee of volunteers is established under Mayor Charles C. Baldelli, Bruce Daigle -Director of Human Services and Ann Sullivan Auclair is named the first Executive Director.
1987- The Task Force is formally created through the Russell Bramley Bill, which became the Rhode Island Substance Abuse Prevention Act.
1988- Woonsocket Task Force on Substance Abuse issues "The Incident of Substance Abuse in the City of Woonsocket" report.
1989- Voluntary training for alcohol servers; first annual prevention award is presented. Study of Elementary ATOD -first ever in the state of RI.
1990- Alcohol Awareness Activities- "I'm Free For The Weekend".
1991- WOON Task Force Update Radio Show begins on WOON 1240AM.
1992- Multi-lingual Substance Abuse Provider Directory sent to 2500 households. Forum on identifying prevention strategies to address multi-cultural ATOD issues.
1993- Landmark Alochol Server ordinance passed in Woonsocket. Co-sponsored "Somethin' for Nothin" Drug Free Youth Initiative. Co-sponsored AIDS Teleconference at Woonsocket High School.
1994- Youth Committee is formed. Annual Youth Lead Conference begins. Presented WTFSA model at Massachussetts Department of Health Conference.
1995- First Parenting Challenge published. Participated in the RIDOH Project Assist grant. Co-sponsored Liquor License holders informational meeting in collaboration with Woonsocket Police Department.
1996- Completed comprehensive Community Needs Assessment. Helped develop enabling legislation which allowed tobacco infractions to be adjudicated locally in Municipal Court versus District Court.
1997- Completed "Planning for the Future I" strategic planning process leading to the development of the first three year plan. Tobacco compliance checks begin.
1998- Task Force Update newspaper column begins. Elderly subcommittee is formed. SACT subcommittee publishes Substance Abuse Provider Matrix. Partnership with URI School of Pharmacy on Senior issues.
1999- WTFSA Youth Committee receives Woonsocket Elk's Youth Appreciation Award. Elderly and Elderly Caregiver Needs Assessment conducted. Professional Development Trainings including CEU's begin. New Website is launched into cyberspace.
2000- Elderly Committee publishes "A Prescription For Trouble" informational brochure. WTFSA receives a Strengthening Families grant from CSAP. Planning For The Future II and second Three Year Plan developed and completed.
2001- "Parental Attitudes and Beliefs About Drug Use" surveys are conducted and published. Original media campaigns using outdoor billboards, bus shelters, print and radio venues begin.
2002- WORD grant funding received through RIDOH from the American Legacy Foundation. CDBG grant received for violence prevention initiatives. Smokefree restaurants surveys conducted.
2003- Planning For The Future III and third Three Year Plan is completed. WTFSA assists City Council in creating minimum standards for Beverage Server trainings. Youth "Crime and Penalty" program begins. Provided tobacco training for youth clerks.
2004- Awarded State Incentive Grant (SIG) from MHRH through SAMHSA. Conducted senior citizen surveys and published results.
2005- Awarded Drug Free Communities Support Program Grant from SAMHSA and ONDCP. Participated in passing Workplace Health and Safety Act. Began faith-based prevention initiatives. Youth Committee changes name to Objective 8.
2006- Completed "Planning For The Future IV" and fourth three year plan.
2007- Awarded Strategic Prevention Framework State Incentive Grant through MHRH/SAMHSA. Supported start of Varsity Athletes Against Substance Abuse program. GIS mapping project on tobacco outlets begin.
2008- Awarded STOP grant through SAMHSA. Organized and held the first Post Graduation Overnight Lock-In Party for high school seniors.
2009- WTFSA changes name to the Woonsocket Prevention Coalition (WPC) . Partnered with YWCA NRI on DOH tobacco disparities grant targeting young mothers. US Surgeon General visits WPC Town Hall Meeting on Underage Drinking.
2010- Conducted "Operation Medicine Chest" Prescription Drop-Off program. Worked with Woonsocket Education Department on updating Chemical Health Policy. Tip Line marketing project targeting unsolved murder in collaboration with police department.
2011- Assisted City Council in creating first local ordinance addressing tobacco and drug paraphernalia in Rhode Island. Crime and Violence Town Hall Meeting held. Participation in Truancy Committee.
WPC supports Beacon Charter High School's Boycott of a local convienience store for displaying drug paraphernalia out in the open. NBC10's coverage of the story.