Saturday, March 29, 2003

Butler offers week of substance abuse events

Speakers, student activities planned

By Anna Guido
Enquirer contributor

HAMILTON - A weeklong series of events is planned in Butler County starting Monday for Substance Abuse Awareness Week.

The kickoff, a "Business After-Hours Reception" will be at 5:15 p.m. Mondayat the Hamilton Elks Lodge on Hamilton-Middletown Road.

"All area substance abuse community volunteer coalitions will be displaying information about their activities," said Tom Kelechi, president of the Alcohol and Chemical Abuse Council of Hamilton.

The countywide program started in 1996. In 2000, it was named Exemplary Substance Abuse Prevention Program in Ohio by the Ohio Department of Alcohol and Drug Additions Services.

Monday's keynote speaker and facilitator will be Rhonda Ramsey Molina, executive director of the Coalition for a Drug-Free Greater Cincinnati.

Wednesday, middle school students from throughout Butler County will display anti-smoking materials and posters in area restaurants and businesses. Also on Wednesday, Mike Thomson, Ph.D.,will host an 11:15 a.m. workshop at the Elks lodge on student-athlete leadership and substance abuse issues. Wednesday evening, from 7 to 9 p.m., a youth theater performance with anti-drug messages will be held at Middletown Community Center.

Thursday, Brent Richardson, Ph.D., will give a presentation from 8:30 a.m. to noon at the Elks lodge on "Strategies for Addressing the Issues of Challenging Youth."

And Friday, about 100 area middle school students will gather at Camp Campbell Gard in St. Clair Townshipfor a substance abuse summit.

For a complete list of events or more information, contact Kelechi at 513-868-2100, or

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