February 2016 ASAC Action Newsletter

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Quit Smoking – Gain a Healthy HeartHeart

IOWA_HealthyHeartEFlyerShow your heart some love—quit smoking. When you do, the benefits start right away. Twenty minutes after your last cigarette, your heart rate begins to return to normal. One hour later, your blood pressure isn’t so high. One day tobacco-free, your risk for heart attack starts to drop. And one year later, it’s cut in half!

Quitline Iowa will give you the heart to quit! Our trained Quit Coaches® love helping people just like you overcome nicotine addiction. Every one-on-one coaching session gives you the know-how and positive encouragement you need to quit for good.

Together, you’ll map out a personalized quit plan that’s right for you. Plus, a coach will give you tried-and-true strategies to fend off cravings, handle social situations, and avoid triggers that can derail you.

Along with phone coaching, you’ll have access to other tools designed to help you stay strong 24/7, including:

  • A copy of our step-by-step Quit Guide to help you throughout your quit
  • Advice about nicotine substitutes and medication that may be right for you. You may even be eligible to receive free nicotine replacement therapy which includes a choice of patch, gum or lozenge.
  • Access to Web Coach®, a vibrant online community where you can find inspiring how-to content, track your progress and connect with other individuals trying to quit

Discover why so many people love living without the burdens of tobacco. Call 1.800.QUIT.NOW (1.800.784.8669), or visit http://www.quitlineiowa.org

Becoming a LBGTQAI-Friendly Provider Training

This training has been developed for educators, healthcare providers, human service providers, social workers, substance abuse treatment and prevention. By attending this training you will be able to identify current trends within the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered, Queer, Asexual and Intersexed (LBGTQAI) community, learn specific needs and risk factors present within the LGBTQAI community, and understand strategies and policy changes that can assist in more effectively serving this population. The training facilitators will be Kimmie Andersen-Reed

Lindsey Elam, ASAC Prevention Specialist

ASAC_TrainingMarch 17, 2016, 1:30pm – 4:45pm
ASAC Clinton, 250 20th Ave N, Clinton


March 18, 9:00am – 12:15pm
ASAC Prevention Services, 3536 18th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids

Cost is $30 per person; $15 for current ASAC staff and interns. The Iowa Board of Certification has approved this training for 3 hours of special populations CEUs.

Cedar Rapids Online registration is limited to 30 participants. Please register by March 1, 2016.

Clinton Online registration is limited to 20 participants. Please register by March 1, 2016.

Questions, contact Kathy Corbett at 319-390-4611 or kcorbett@asac.us

Heart of Iowa Gets “Lit Up”

Close up - Working on the lighting projectEight IBEW #405 electricians volunteered their time on Saturday, January 30th, to install new lighting in the Heart of Iowa group room and second floor hallway.

There was only canned lighting in the upstairs hallways and the group room making the spaces very dark. The new florescent lighting makes the areas very bright and cheerful.

We greatly appreciate the members of IBEW #405 giving their time and talents to ASAC’s Heart of Iowa Mother and Child Recovery Center.

 Live Healthy Iowa Challenge

ck_LHIK_10WWC_calloutAt ASAC, we promote healthy living to not just our clients, but also to our employees. The Live Healthy Iowa challenge provides an opportunity for ASAC employees to improve their health while engaging in fun, friendly competition. From January 25 – April 1st, ASAC’s Live Healthy Iowa team members will track their activity minutes or weight loss.

ASAC has four teams participating in Live Healthy Iowa’s 10 Week Wellness Challenge.

NewTeamsOver the next few months, we will be tracking the progress of ASAC’s teams and in April we will announce who is the Winning Team! Stay tuned!

ASAC Benefits from the Linn County Sleep Out

At a check ceremony on January 26, 2016, ASAC received $3,150 from the Linn County Circle of Care for our two Cedar Rapids transitional housing programs: Adult Halfway House and Heart of Iowa Halfway House.

The check was ASAC’s share of the more than $30,000 raised from the 10th Annual Sleep Out for the Homeless that was held on Saturday, November 7th – Sunday, November 8th at Veterans Memorial Stadium. The purpose of the Sleep Out is to increase awareness of the issue of homelessness in our community and to raise funds for area programs that serve the homeless. A total of 24 teams and 164 individuals helped to raise funds for the Sleep Out.

Mark your calendars. The 11th Annual Sleep Out for the Homeless will be held on October 29 – October 30, 2016.  Please visit http://www.sleepoutforhomeless.org/ for more information.

2015 SO ASAC

Theresa Ann Trimble, Linn County Circle of Care; Wanda Mokry Sellers, Heart of Iowa; Kelly Reitzler, ASAC’s Adult Halfway House; Don Tyne, Sleep Out Committee; and Ann Hearn, Linn County Community Services

Community Substance Abuse Issues, A Time for Action

By: Lindsey Elam, Certified Prevention Specialist

It is common to hear from the general public that they know someone who may be suffering from a substance use disorder, but if you are one of the lucky few who do not know someone personally or see or hear anything about these issues, is it not a problem in your community?  According to the Linn County Coalition for Safe and Healthy Communities survey conducted over the past few months, this seems to be the case. For those who stated that they did not believe alcohol or marijuana were problems in their communities, not being able to physically see it was their main reason for feeling that way.

While you might not have to directly deal with someone that is struggling with a substance use disorder, you are paying a price in your community and these prices you pay are big problems.  According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, in 2014, Alcohol, Tobacco, and Illicit drugs added up to over 700 billion dollars in costs to society. These costs ranged from healthcare, loss of work productivity and violence.  Although taxes are collected on legal substances such as alcohol and tobacco, the taxes collected do not come close to covering the costs that we have to pay for the negative impacts they have in our community.

The Behavioral Risk Surveillance Systems 10 year summary on adult binge drinking has shown that Iowa had a binge drinking rate well above the U.S., and local data states Linn County has an even higher rate than that of Iowa. Locally, the Iowa Department of Public Health shows alcohol as the primary substance for treatment admissions in Linn County with Marijuana treatment admissions climbing at a concerning rate.

Adults in Linn County may not view substance use as main concerns, but youth who took the Linn County survey are singing a different tune. Youth in Linn County seem to have a better grasp on the problem and have reported several issues they are seeing from students using it at school and getting in trouble, smelling marijuana as they walk through the halls, kids using in the bathrooms, or in some cases, using in class.  All ages stated that alcohol and marijuana are easy to get from anyone including a friend, neighborhood dealer, dealer at school, friends of friends, or college campuses.  Lastly, youth surveyed realize that substance abuse doesn’t just affect the individual or close friends and family. Many youth has stated that substance abuse issues in our community have led to violence, gang issues, vandalism, among many other issues.

It is time to take action because the issues surrounding substance use disorders are occurring in our communities. The good news is that in Linn County we have a support system in our community that is ready to hit the ground running and take that action.  For more information or to get involved with the Linn County Coalition for Safe and Healthy Communities, contact Lindsey Elam at lelam@asac.us

Sources: Center for Disease Control, Iowa Department of Public Health

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