Young Adult Advisory Committee Meeting, 12/11: Food and Fun!

Young Adult Advisory Committee Meeting, 12/11: Food and Fun!

Young Adults in the Greater Manchester Region! Please join us for our Young Adult Advisory Committee Meeting on 12/11, 6-8pm. This group is discussing needs of young adults living and working in the City, as well as networking with each other to meet new friends in a healthy and welcoming atmosphere. Food will be provided! Hope to see you there! See Bookery Flyer for details.

Contact: Kristie Curtis, Young Adult Strategies Manager,
voice/txt: 603.660.9258

HIDTA Opioid Response Strategy Symposium

HIDTA Opioid Response Strategy Symposium

The two-day HIDTA symposium brought together nearly 250 experts and professionals in the fields of drug treatment, research, law enforcement and prevention to help share ideas, solutions and strategies on how they are fighting the growing heroin/opioid epidemic in their respective areas.

Makin’ It Happen was honored to be invited to speak on a panel with two other professionals from different parts of the country about what we are doing regarding prevention in NH. empowerYOUTH! was highlighted, as well as strategies to engage the youth voice through prevention efforts.

The symposium was a great mix of professionals across sectors who have been working hard in their respective areas to combat the opioid epidemic that has been taking over our nation. NH was well represented with Mary Forsythe Taber, Executive Director of Makin’ It Happen, and her Young Adult Specialist, Kristie Curtis; Jake Berry, Vice President of Policy from New Futures; David Mara, Governor Sununu’s Advisor on Addiction and Behavioral Health; Captain Gregory Ferry of the NH State Police; and Kenneth Bradley, Drug Intelligence Officer, New England HIDTA/NH.

Thank you to Ohio HIDTA for an engaging symposium, to the city of Cleveland for a hospitable trip, and especially to Ken Bradley for inviting MIH to present on our efforts in Prevention.

GHS Youth Take Action Against Vaping

GHS Youth Take Action Against Vaping

This afternoon, the same day that the FDA released the latest numbers on vaping — up 80% among youth with 1 in 5 high school students reporting having vaped in the past 30 days, Goffstown High School held an assembly about the dangers and consequences of vaping. “Something needs to be done,” a GHS student said of the vaping epidemic taking hold on his friends and classmates during September’s Youth Forum meeting.

Youth Forum, a program of Crispin’s House Coalition for Youth in partnership with GHS, has been convening monthly for over 25 years. Students, co-convener and guidance counselor extraordinaire John Webb, and trusted adults from the community come together each month to work on issues and concerns that are important to students and their peers. With the support of adults, youth take action to make their school and community a healthier place for all.

Today’s vaping assembly — the latest of countless initiatives between youth and adults born at the Youth Forum table — began development in September when it was clear that students were tiring of vaping taking over their restrooms at school and grabbing hold on a growing number of their peers. It was decided that they would hold an optional assembly to get REAL about vaping, during the school day. Adults supported the initiative by bringing together the expert panel — Laurie Warnock from the Poison Center, Todd Lavallee, Dean of Students, Shannon Hebert,  Student Assistance Counselor, and Officer Pelletier, the Student Resource Officer from GPD. Crispin’s House, the DEA of New England, and other community partners worked to pull together the most knowledgeable resources to speak on the panel about the facts, risks, and consequences of this growing epidemic.

The turnout of students attending this optional assembly was huge! Over 250 youth were in attendance and engaged with the presentation. Vaping is clearly a serious issue in middle and high schools across the country, and GHS students are ready to take it on! Given a voice, youth will work hard to keep themselves and their peers informed and healthy. Will this be the next generation of youth addicted to nicotine, or the generation to create positive change and not be used as the key marketers for big tobacco? When youth are empowered to make informed, healthy choices, big tobacco loses, and the health of future generations prevails.

The Ripple Effect with Kevin Hines

Belmont High School is hosting a screening of the film Suicide The Ripple Effect on Saturday, November 17. Kevin Hines will be in attendance for a Q&A session after the film.

This event is free and open to the public, and a dinner is included. More information is enclosed in the flyer below:

Belmont High School is hosting a screening of the film Suicide The Ripple Effect on Saturday, November 17. Kevin Hines will be in attendance for a Q&A session after the film. This event is free and open to the public.

Flyer for more info: Ripple Effect – Save the Date 2018 updated

“It’s Criminal” Film Screening – 11/13/18 5pm

UNH School of Law, Free Screening of “It’s Criminal”, Join us for a screening of It’s Criminal on November 13 at 5 pm at UNH School of Law with a Q&A panel discussion to follow. 

Refreshments will be served. Deadline for registration is November 1st.

It’s Criminal highlights the economic and social inequities that divide the United States and offers a vision of how separated communities can learn to speak to each other. Poignant and personal, the 80-minute feature documentary shares the life-changing journeys of incarcerated women and Dartmouth College students working together to write and perform an original play that explores the often painful and troubled paths that landed the women behind bars and also shares some of their fragile visions for the future.

It’s a transformational movie that delves into privilege, poverty, and injustice and asks viewers to think about who is in prison and why. In addition to exploring disparities, It’s Criminal also captures how the students and prisoners struggle and ultimately succeed in overcoming their fears and prejudices to form hard-won bonds of friendship, showing that empathy is a powerful force that can help bridge the divide.”

Resilience:  The Biology of Stress & The Science of Hope – 11/15/18  6:30 pm

Resilience: The Biology of Stress & The Science of Hope – 11/15/18 6:30 pm

“Researchers have recently discovered a dangerous biological syndrome caused by abuse and neglect during childhood. As the new documentary Resilience reveals, toxic stress can trigger hormones that wreak havoc on the brains and bodies of children, putting them at a greater risk for disease, homelessness, prison time, and early death. While the broader impacts of poverty worsen the risk, no segment of society is immune. Resilience, however, also chronicles the dawn of a movement that is determined to fight back. Trailblazers in pediatrics, education, and social welfare are using cutting-edge science and field-tested therapies to protect children from the insidious effects of toxic stress—and the dark legacy of a childhood that no child would choose.” ( 

Location: AustinHouse17, 263 Route 125, Brentwood, NH


ENDS Focus Group Participants Needed

ENDS Focus Group Participants Needed

Advisors! The state is conducting focus groups across NH called the E.N.D.S Project—Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems.  Makin’ it Happen has been asked to gather a group of 9-13 students ranging in age of 13 to 18 years old for this 90 minute focus group. The state is offering a $20 gift card to Walmart and refreshments. We know our students have a lot to say about this topic so we are sure we can get at least one group together from Greater Manchester. Click here for a flyer with date, time, and location.

Please RSVP to Pam at with your students name. If the student is under 18, please have them get their parent/guardian’s  signature at the bottom of the focus group description page and bring it on the day of event. Space is limited so we will have a cut off and final decision on participants based on a diverse age representation.

Manchester empowerYOUTH Team Attend Youth Leadership Day

Manchester empowerYOUTH Team Attend Youth Leadership Day

On Friday, November 2nd, the Manchester EmpowerYOUTH team attended a great day of youth leadership skills building with Dover Y2Y.

Seven middle and high school empowerYOUTH! Team members from Manchester were represented at the Inspire Change Youth Empowerment Conference at the Austin 17 House in Brentwood. The opportunity provided for a full day learning about presentation skills, meeting other young leaders from across the state, and creating a presentation on the dangers of vaping and e-cigarettes.


Unintended Consequences Regarding the Legalization and Commercialization of Marijuana: NH’s Children

There is much debate on the issue of whether marijuana should be decriminalized, legalized, commercialized, and so forth. The most recent news story of kids being exposed to highly potent levels of marijuana, here at home in NH, comes out of an incident that occurred at Timberlane Regional Middle School. It is a good example of why the majority of Preventionists and Public Health professionals do not support legalization. It is not because we do not feel that grown adults should not be allowed to make their own decisions, seek medical advice from their doctors, or to take away any adult’s rights to make an informed choice. Our view point is based in public health, and how matters like legalization will affect the children of NH.

Excerpt from‘s Five Fast Facts about Marijuana Legalization:

“Marijuana use during youth, when young brains are developing, can have long-term negative health effects. Here in New Hampshire, we know how important it is to support youth as they make the transition from adolescence to adulthood. We also know that substance use can be an obstacle to that successful transition. Our brains are built from the bottom up and are still developing through our early to mid-twenties. Using harmful substances such as marijuana during those critical years has the potential to negatively impact brain development and lead to negative outcomes.”

Back to the WMUR story out of Timberlane. 

These middle school students were able to obtain what early reports indicate to be commercially made edible marijuana chocolates. They got sick. One had to be treated at the hospital. This is the effect of marijuana commercialization on our children. The potency of edibles is much higher — and scarier when it comes to a young, developing brain — than what some adults may categorize in the likes of “pot brownies” of the 1960’s. It’s a sophisticated business, and just like Big Pharma, Big Tobacco, & Big Alcohol: it is poised and ready to target and appeal to our children. It’s here and it’s already happening.

Please talk to your kids about marijuana. Need advice on how to do this in a developmentally appropriate way? Click here for some great resources.