Photo courtesy of MIYFS Facebook
                                Mercer Island Youth and Family Services received a 4-yer grant prevention grant from the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services.

Photo courtesy of MIYFS Facebook Mercer Island Youth and Family Services received a 4-yer grant prevention grant from the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services.

MIYFS receives 4-year prevention grant

The $48,500 per year will be used for the ongoing work to reduce binge and heavy-drinking rate of Island Youth.

The Mercer Island Youth and Family Services (MIYFS) Department recently received a four-year alcohol abuse prevention grant.

The grant of $48,500 per year will be used in ongoing work to reduce the binge drinking and heavy-drinking rate of Island youth.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services (SAMHSA) awarded MIYFS the Sober Truth on Preventing Underage Drinking Act (STOP) grant in June. MIYFS was one of the 22 coalitions across the country to receive the STOP grant.

Derek Franklin, senior programs manager and clinical supervisor, said the grant’s focus is on prevention of underage alcohol use.

“The grant will give us the opportunity to ramp back up some underage alcohol prevention,” Franklin said. “Although underage drinking has reduced significantly in the past 15 years, our youth are [still] binge drinking. They’re drinking more than four to five drinks in a single episode. Island youth are binge drinking more than some of their peers statewide.”

Results from a 2012 survey showed that underage alcohol use among Mercer Island High School 12th-grade students had declined. Data suggested that 30-day alcohol use among seniors had decreased to the lowest rate in more than a decade — about 45 percent down from a high of almost 60 percent in 2000. The 2018 Washington State Healthy Youth Survey showed that past 30-day alcohol use also had dropped — down from 41 percent to 28 percent. Franklin said compared to the state, Island numbers are still high and they have a lot of work to do.

According to research done by Dr. Suniya Luthar, youth in affluent communities are more at risk for underage alcohol and other drug involvement. Dr. Luthar’s work identifies the family, peer and school factors most strongly predict the adverse outcomes.

“It’s stress and anxiety, as well as depression that is linked to underage drinking,” Franklin said. “Our kids, in particular, have anxiety due to performance pressure — pressure to succeed academically and financially. It comes from kids themselves, parents and from a perceived norm and culture on the Island of needing to do well academically and financially.”

With the funds, Franklin said the Mercer Island Healthy Youth Initiative will expand and enhance current capacity, and undertake additional social norms media work to target past-30-day alcohol use, perception of risk and harm related alcohol use, and perception of parent and peer disapproval of underage alcohol.

Funding begins by the end of September.

To learn more go online to www.miyfs.org.

More in News

File photo
$30 car tab proposal returns to ballot in November

Tim Eyman-led initiative would restrict car tabs and transportation benefit districts in Washington.

Courtesy photo
                                Liat Perlman (left) and Sarah Hobson (right) launched Spirit206 over the summer.
MIHS students launch Spirit206

Spirit206 is a platform for student artists to showcase and sell handmade spirit wear.

A reduced pressure backflow assembly located on a water fill station at the city maintenance yard. Photo courtesy of Brain McDaniel
Backflow assembly tests are overdue

More than 100 sites have yet to report their results.

Mercer Island PD hopes sonar will lead to missing boaters

Cell phones left behind on boat gave little help in narrowing the search area.

File photo
King County alcohol production ordinance could be approved by year’s end

Update to county code has been more than a year in the making.

Mercer Island City Hall. File photo
Council voted to find Mayor in violation of code of ethics

Aug. 20 council meeting held executive session, investigative review of Mayor’s email.

KCSO found all but one of the 108 allegations of excessive or unnecessary use of force were justified

The Office of Law Enforcement Oversight has released its annual 2018 report.

Parts of Mercer Island left without power after car collides with pole

A 41-year-old Seattle woman was allegedly intoxicated when the accident happened.

Most Read