• First district-wide event to help students and families with substance use set for Thursday

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    Substance use and addiction can present serious challenges for students and their families, and Portland Public School is committed to providing the support, guidance and resources they need. On Thursday, we will host the first district-wide family informational night on substance use, titled “A Healthy Me is Substance Free.”

    The event, which is open to students in grades 6-12 and their families, starts at 6:30 p.m. at Grant High School’s commons area. Doors will open at 6 p.m., and a buffet-style dinner from Tamale Boy will be served. Childcare and interpreters in all five of PPS’s supported languages (Spanish, Vietnamese, Chinese, Russian and Somali) will be available.

    After dinner, there will be a half-hour panel discussion. Participants will include:

    • A clinical manager from Puentes, a treatment program that features bilingual and bicultural staff to help serve Latino families.
    • The director of the REAL (Recovery, Empowerment, Achievement in Life) Program from Lifeworks Northwest.
    • A young adult who is in recovery.
    • A PPS representative who will talk about district resources.

    After the panel discussion, participants will be able to break off into workshops in separate classrooms. The workshop presenters will include:

    • A representative from Recovery CrossFit, a fitness program for the recovery community.
    • A DePaul presentation about adolescent brain development and substance use.
    • A Multnomah County presentation on vaping.
    • A youth-only presentation from the young adult from the panel discussion.
    • A session on strategies and problem-solving for parents and care givers.

    Representatives from various organizations will be available for questions at tables from 6-7:30 p.m.

    The event is sponsored by Regence BlueCross BlueShield. A similar event will be held in Spanish at Roosevelt High School on Thursday, April 23.