Empowering our youth for a brighter future

No matter who you are it’s fair to say we all want the best for the young people in our community. We want them to be healthy, happy and safe, because when they thrive, our community thrives.

As children grow up, they will inevitably be confronted by many challenges, including the temptation and pressure to use alcohol or drugs. Educating young people and giving them tools to use when they are in these situations is critical to protect them from the dangers of substance abuse.

The Douglas County Healthy Youth Coalition created this website to empower young people in our community to make good choices for their health and well-being. We hope by doing so we can prevent or reduce substance abuse amongst our teens and young adults.

Whether you are a young person struggling with a substance abuse-related challenge, a concerned parent, or a teacher, counselor, or other professional, we hope you will use this site as a resource for guidance and support.

Parents are the most powerful influence in a child’s life. Kids who consistently learn about the risks of drugs from their parents are 50% less likely to use drugs and alcohol than those who do not.

The Douglas County Healthy Youth Coalition is working to build protective factors for youth in Douglas County at the individual, school, and community levels, while decreasing risk factors.

Risk factors are characteristics within the individual or conditions in the family, school or community that increase the likelihood someone will engage in unhealthy behavior such as: the use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs, violence, suicide, or early sexual activity. The more risk factors present in a child’s life, the greater the likelihood problems will develop in adolescence.

Protective factors are characteristics within the individual or conditions in the family, school or community that help someone cope successfully with life challenges. When people can successfully negotiate their problems and deal with pre-existing risk factors, they are less likely to engage in unhealthy behavior. Protective factors are instrumental in healthy development; they build resiliency, skills and connections.

Our Mission: We put the health and well-being of Douglas County youth first through advocacy, education, and community partnerships.

* 2017 Healthy Kids Colorado Survey of 9th-12th graders in Douglas County