National Prevention Week occurs every year in May, and helps increase public awareness of mental and/or substance use disorders. This year, National Prevention Week is May 13 – 19. May is a great time to discuss these topics as summer break is just around the corner for many teens.
According to samhsa.gov, the three goals of National Prevention Week are to:
- Involve communities in raising awareness about behavioral health issues and implementing prevention strategies;
- Foster partnerships and collaboration with federal agencies and national organizations dedicated to behavioral and public health; and
- Promote and disseminate quality behavioral health resources and publications.
Each day, our blog will focus on a different theme for National Prevention Week. We will discuss tips for improving mental health and wellness, as well as prevention tips for underage drinking, opioid drug use, illicit drug use, tobacco use, and suicide.
How can you get involved with National Prevention Week? Join the NPW 2018 Prevention Challenge: Dear Future Me. Write a letter or draw a picture about the choices you are making to live a healthier, happier life. Take a picture of your letter, or record a video of yourself reading your letter. Share it on social media using the hashtags #DearFutureMe and #NPW2018. Tag some friends so they can participate too!
You can also host an event in your community, such as a town hall meeting, educational assembly, memorial walk, a fun run/walk for prevention, and more. Samhsa.gov even has a free toolkit to get you started! If you don’t plan an event, but there is one near you, participate! Join the discussion and help spread awareness!