Tempe Coalition Awarded $625,000 Grant From the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy

Five-year grant of $125,000 per year will fund the non-profit Tempe Coalition and its underage drinking and drug use prevention programs through 2022.


PHOENIX – October 5, 2017 – The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) is making it possible for Tempe Coalition to continue providing teen substance abuse prevention in Tempe through September 2022 with the award of a $625,000 grant, which will be allocated in increments $125,000 per year for the next five years.


The grant is aimed at reducing alcohol and marijuana use, and changing youths’ attitudes about addictive substances and the common misconception that substance use is not harmful.


This is the second time Tempe Coalition has received the Drug Free Communities Support Program grant, as the organization was awarded its first five-year grant in 2011. That grant money funded an initiative that helped to reduce underage drinking in Tempe by 12 percent during the past four years, according to findings by the Arizona Youth Survey, which is administered every two years in Tempe middle and high schools by the Arizona Criminal Justice Commission.


“Our new parent education materials are making dramatic strides in helping reduce the number of Tempe teens drinking alcohol,” says Craig L. Keller, Tempe Coalition Board Chair. “This renewed funding makes it possible for the Tempe Coalition to continue the momentum we have generated during the past five years.”


The grant comes through the Drug Free Communities Support Program, (DFC) created by the Drug Free Communities Act of 1997. It is the nation’s leading effort to mobilize communities to prevent youth substance use. In partnership with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the DFC Program provides grants to community coalitions to create and sustain a reduction in local youth substance use.


More than half of Tempe eighth, tenth and twelfth graders report they believe smoking marijuana regularly poses little or no risk of harm, according to the 2016 Arizona Youth Survey.


Through the Drug Free Communities Support Program grant, Tempe Coalition staff and coalition members will collaborate with community partners and work to shift the attitudes of students who believe there is no risk involved in using the drug.


“Tempe Coalition members support a vision that Tempe is a community where youth have the support and resources they need to make positive choices,” said Hilary Cummings, Tempe Coalition program director.


The current Tempe Coalition is made up of concerned citizens of the Tempe community, representing local businesses, faith based organizations, prevention providers, substance abuse treatment providers, school administrators, local government, law enforcement, parents and youth.


Community members interested in participating in Tempe Coalition activities can learn more by sending an email to TempeCoalition@tempe.gov. The Coalition meets every second Tuesday of the month from 4 until 5 p.m. in the 2nd floor conference room at the Tempe Public Library, located at 3500 S. Rural Road in Tempe.


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About Tempe Coalition


The Tempe Coalition is comprised of residents and professionals who live and work in the community and strive to collectively advocate for the reduction of alcohol and drug use among Tempe youth. Tempe Community Council (TCC) serves as the fiscal agent of the Tempe Coalition. Tempe Community Council is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that works in partnership with the City of Tempe, community organizations and dedicated individuals to serve as planner, researcher, advocate and resource to advance human services for all Tempe residents.





  1. David Wheeler on October 17, 2017 at 11:41 pm

    As a nurse who attended a few of your meetings I can not say enough good things about the job you do! I love your organization and you are making a difference. Congratulations on your grant. I do have a suggestion. Please consider your stand on marijuana. I believe it is important to emphasize that pot may not be appropriate for teenagers. I saw a facebook post from the coalition today that made my blood boil! Condemning pot because it is smoked. Instead of tacking the larger issues, and there are many, you concentrate on the fact that smoking a burning substance is not good for the lungs, and add a picture of a marijuana leaf with the symbol for no stamped across it. I’m sorry this is propaganda and you are better than this.

    • Tempecoalition on October 20, 2017 at 8:34 pm

      Good afternoon David. While I appreciate all that you are saying here, I think you misunderstand our message in regards to marijuana. Our message is not a political one nor are we stating opposition to marijuana use necessarily. Our mission is clear that the Tempe Coalition wants to keep drugs and alcohol away from youth under the age of 18. This is about the developing mind and body, as well as the legality. As a data driven group, we stick to the facts that marijuana use is harmful to youth. If you wish to have any further dialogue you may email the Coalition at TempeCoalition@tempe.gov or call me at 480-858-2316. Thank you. Hilary Cummings, Tempe Coalition Program Director

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