National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week


January 24th- 31st marks the  National Drug Facts Week, sponsored by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. This week-long observance is an opportunity for parents, youth, and the community to learn facts about drugs, alcohol, and addiction from professionals.

In the spirit of  National Drug Facts week, the CONNECT program is gathering information from our community members to explore ways we can address these topics in our own community.

Please click on the image below is the link to a brief, anonymous survey we are asking you to complete.     

In support of our program we would love to hear from you:


December: A Month of Multicultural Holiday Celebrations

Do you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or Three Kings Day? Maybe you celebrate St. Lucia or Ramadan.  Whether that is the case or not, December offers great opportunities for learning about our multicultural world.

The following multicultural events and celebrations are among those that will happen this year:

  • Ramadan (Muslim)- 6 June 2016
  • Eid al-Fitr (Muslim)- 7 July 2016
  • Saint Nicholas Day (Christian)- 6 December 2016
  • Eid’ul-Adha (Muslim)- 12-13 September 2016
  • Fiesta of Our Lady Guadalupe (Mexican)- 12 December 2016
  • St. Lucia Day (Swedish)- 13 December 2016
  • Hanukkah (Jewish)- 24 December 2016- 1 January 2017
  • Christmas Day (Christian)- 25 December 2016
  • Three Kings Day/Epiphany (Christian)- 6 January 2016
  • Boxing Day (Australian, Canadian, English, Irish)-26 December 2016
  • Kwanzaa (African American)- 26 December- 1 January
  • Omisoka (Japanese)- 1 January 2016
  • Yule (Pagan)- 31 December 2016
  • Saturnalia (Pagan)- 17 December 2016

May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month

Regular physical activity is good for everyone’s health, and people of all ages and body types can be physically active.

National Physical Fitness and Sports Month is a great time to spread the word about the benefits of getting active.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports that nearly eighty percent of adults and seventy-five percent of adolescents do not get the daily recommended amount of physical activity. Use these resources to help get students, staff, and parents off to a healthy start for spring.

Just as you might track the number of books read, hours spent reading, or time spent on other academic pursuits, why not challenge students (or families) to track their physical activity, and increase their numbers each week over the course of the month? 

National AfterSchool Association • 2961A Hunter Mill Road, #626 • Oakton, VA 22124 •

National Drug Fact Week Contest Answers

Q1: In 2009, what percentage of 16 or 17 year olds drove under the influence of drugs or alcohol?
  • 6.3%
Q2: Which of the following statements about the popular ADHD drug Adderall is true
  • None of the above
Q3: A study that followed 1,000 people for more than 38 years showed that people who started smoking marijuana regularly as teenagers actually lost IQ points as they got older; and they never got them back even if they quit as adults. On average how many points were lost?
  • 8
Q4: Some young people who abuse opioid painkillers like OxyContin switch to heroin-True or False
  • True
Q5: Tobacco is the leading preventable cause of disease and death in the U.S. It causes:
  • About 1 in every 5 early deaths
Q6: Alcohol and marijuana are the drugs most abused by teenagers. What comes next?
  • Prescription drugs and cough medicine
Q7: What is the most common two-drug combination that results in death?
  • Prescription painkillers and Alcohol
Q8: About how many 8th graders have tried and inhalant to get high?
  • 1in10
Q9: We have heard a lot about the dangers of drugs called “bath salts”. Which things are true about “bath salts”?
  • All of the above.


The American Institute of Stress (AIS) is a non-profit organization which imparts information on stress reduction, stress in the workplace, effects of stress and various other stress related topics. AIS was founded in 1978, at the request of Dr. Hans Selye to serve as a clearinghouse of all stress related information. Today, AIS provides a diverse and inclusive environment that fosters intellectual discovery creates and transmits innovative knowledge, improves human health and provides leadership to the world on stress related topics.

What is Stress?

If you were to ask a dozen people to define stress, or explain what causes stress for them, or how stress affects them, you would likely get 12 different answers to each of these requests. The reason for this is that there is no definition of stress that everyone agrees on, what is stressful for one person may be pleasurable or have little effect on others. We all react to stress differently.

Effects of Stress

Stress is difficult for scientists to define because it is a highly subjective phenomenon that differs for each of us. Things that are distressful for some individuals can be pleasurable for others. We also respond to stress differently. Some people blush, some eat more while others grow pale or eat less. There are numerous physical as well as emotional responses as illustrated by the list of some 50 common signs and symptoms of stress found on the next page.

America’s # 1 Health Problem

Contemporary stress tends to be more pervasive, persistent and insidious because it stems primarily from psychological than physical threats.  It is associated with ingrained and immediate reactions over which we have no control that were originally designed to be beneficial.

 Workplace Stress

Numerous surveys and studies confirm that occupational pressures and fears are far and away the leading source of stress for American adults and that these have steadily increased over the past few decades. While there are tons of statistics to support these allegations, how significant they are depends on such things as how the information was obtained (self-report vs. answers to carefully worded questions), the size and demographics of the targeted group, how participants were selected and who sponsored the study.

Stress Management

Just as stress is different for each of us there is no stress reduction strategy that is a panacea.  The key to reducing stress is to prevent it. Getting enough sleep, a proper diet, avoiding excess caffeine and other stimulants and taking time out to relax may be helpful in this regard. Many stress relievers work because of the power of the placebo effect that comes from having faith in the procedure or the therapist. Other very different approaches can achieve the same results because they reduce feelings of helplessness and provide a sense of control over the problem.




The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or is a toll-free suicide prevention hotline network comprised of over 150 local crisis centers. The Lifeline is funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and administered by Link2Health Solutions, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Mental Health Association of New York City (MHA-NYC). The Lifeline provides free and confidential crisis counseling to anyone in need 24/7 and has answered over 3 million call since its launch in 2005.