FRANKFORT, Ky. - Governor Ernie Fletcher today presented a $70,000 check to Magoffin County for substance abuse services and early intervention programs.
The funding will be used to provide in-home services to Magoffin County families impacted by drug addiction. The grant is from the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services' (CHFS) Department for Community Based Services (DCBS), the cabinet's child welfare and family services agency.
A $50,000 grant specifically provides in-home services for families at-risk because of substance abuse and early intervention case management from local providers.
The remaining $20,000 goes toward child care assistance for parents in treatment.
Governor Fletcher praised the project and said community leaders can use this grant to help change the lives of many area children.
"We all know that the best place for a child to grow is at home," said
Governor Fletcher. "But so many homes are in danger of becoming unsafe because of a parent's addiction. This initiative provides local providers the ability to intervene and provide treatment services so children can safely stay where they belong."
CHFS Secretary Mark D. Birdwhistell said the grant indicates the department's stronger approach toward enhancing the prevention-related resources that target child safety, family preservation and reunification.
"This funding gives the Salyersville community the means to better remove the barriers that keep so many parents from getting treatment for an alcohol or drug abuse problem," Birdwhistell said.
Two significant partners in Magoffin County will be the Magoffin County
Local Board for KY-ASAP (Kentucky Agency for Substance Abuse Policy) - part of the local health department - and the MAPP (Mobilizing for Action through Planning and Partnerships) Magoffin Advisory Council. Both groups will help plan for the grant's uses. MAPP Magoffin is working to raise funds to match the state grant and assist more families.
An informal MAPP survey revealed that 84 percent of Magoffin residents think that substance abuse is the county's number one health problem.
DCBS Commissioner Tom Emberton Jr. said DCBS is strengthening its efforts in local community partnerships that target substance abuse prevention and treatment for parents. The goals are to reduce the rate of children's re-entry into foster care and the number of chemically-dependent parents.
DCBS will provide intensive case management services to chemically dependent parents of children at risk, with the goal of reunifying the family.
A community planning team will develop child abuse and neglect prevention programs and community partnership activities to keep families together.
Emberton said a high number of DCBS clients are affected by drug issues. More than 80 percent of children removed from their homes and placed in state care are from families with substance abuse problems.
"Beyond protecting children who are already affected, we want to reduce the factors that put kids at risk for being removed from an unsafe home," Emberton said.
Primary prevention services will include parent education classes open to anyone in the community and family support programs. Prevention activities will be targeted at families that have one or more risk factors including substance abuse, teen parents, parents of children with special needs, single parents and low-income households. Secondary prevention services include parent education classes targeted for high-risk parents, respite care for parents of a child with a disability or home visiting programs for new parents.
"Substance abuse has ill effects on every area of family life, and the state often pays to remedy those issues," Emberton said. "Through better prevention and treatment efforts, we can save money and preserve families before they get to a point of desperate need."