The site for substance abuse prevention and mental health promotion professionals and volunteers.

Home » Fellows in Phase 3 - Seeking Advice on Beginning Steps

Fellows in Phase 3 - Seeking Advice on Beginning Steps

Hello and happy Tuesday folks!

My name is Destiny Eversull, and I am one of the Cohort 1 Prevention Fellows. July marks the beginning of our phase 3 work and I would love any/all insight from those who most recently started with CPWI- Cohort 6! I am interested in hearing stories of challenges and success, as well as general tips and tricks to getting community buy in. :) I am starting with 0 sectors and would be interested in hearing about sector recruitment as well. Thank you in advance for your time and wisdom!


General Discussion
IsaacWulff- Jul 10, 2019 03:32 PM Reply

Hi Destiny, great to hear you are moving along in your phases. You will be fantastic! It's hard to answer your question precisely because every community is different, which why so much of this work is now being done with the coalition model. I have the privelege of working with two different coalitions, Morton, a town of 1,000 with ~15 kids per grade, and Centralia, a town of 30K+ and 250 kids per grade! They are vastly different in how the coalition functions, how members behave, what the problems are, etc, etc. Despite that, the one thing I think is consistent between the two, at least as far as buy-in goes, is that the people you want involved respect reciprocity above all. It's not as simple as WIIFM (what's in it for me), if there's someone I want to come to meetings or workgroups, I don't even ask them anymore until I have done at least three favors for them, with no mention of what I want. Basically I want them to feel so guilty for not getting involved in prevention that they have to start coming to meetings. 

It would be great if it was as simple as saying, "Our kids are in danger and we can DO something about it!" but some folks have a really hard time believing that, and we need everyone at the table, not just the easily convinced. It's not that they don't care, they just think youth drug use is inevitable, or some other spurious reason. To really change their minds, you need them to pay attention to you for an extended period of time, and that requires them to feel obligated to you in some way. Go to their meetings, work at their fundraisers, attend their community events, and eventually they will be like, "What can we do for you?" and you will calmly reply...

"Funny you should ask..."

You're going to rock this.

destiny.e- Jul 12, 2019 03:47 PM Reply


That is a really great idea, I hadn't even thought of attending meetings that seem outside the scope of prevention. But you are right, if I want the community to care about what I have to say, I need to show I am invested in what they have to say. Thank you so much for your words of wisdom, support and encouragement!


aheikkila- Jul 11, 2019 02:25 PM Reply

I would emulate what Isaac has said as well.  If I recall, you are going into the Sultan community?  I think some of your challenges may come from timing as well.  Sultan is a small community and typically in small communities schools are very integral in helping new folks get connected to the movers and shakers.  WIth school being out for summer it may be a bit more challenging to get connected to those folks.  If I remember right, The Reptile Man is located between Monroe and Sultan.  He has done many assemblies throughout Washington State and may be a good resource to tap into for knowing some of the local folks that could be a great addition on your coalition.  Just a thought.....

destiny.e- Jul 12, 2019 03:50 PM Reply


Thank you for replying to my post! I agree, the timing is a little off to get maximum school involvement, but thankfully I have a meeting with the Superintendent and I am hoping that will get me a little further in that realm. As far as the Reptile Man, yes! He is in between the two towns. I never thought about leveraging him as a resource, but that is exactly the kind of innovative idea I was hoping to get when I posted. Thank you again for your reply and all your kernals of knowledge :)