Meth Project Foundation Joins The Partnership at Drugfree.org
Hawaii Meth Project to Continue its Focus on Meth Prevention Operating as Independent Organization and Local Member of The Partnership
News Release from Hawaii Meth Project
HONOLULU—March 13, 2013—The Partnership at Drugfree.org announced today that the Meth Project Foundation—the national organization that created the Meth Project's renowned and effective methamphetamine prevention program—will join The Partnership's national efforts to reduce substance abuse among teens. The Partnership will take over the management of the Foundation's creative assets, prevention tools, and family of websites, including MethProject.org. The Hawaii Meth Project will continue operating as an independent organization, focusing on local efforts to prevent meth use. As a member of The Partnership, the Hawaii Meth Project will now also have access to the expertise and resources of the nation's most respected organization dedicated to reducing substance abuse.
"The Hawaii Meth Project will continue its community-based focus on meth prevention," said Hawaii Meth Project Executive Director David Earles. "Access to additional prevention tools from The Partnership at Drugfree.org, such as resources for parents, will greatly enhance our efforts to reduce meth use among Hawaii's young people."
The Hawaii Meth Project launched in 2009. In addition to its public education campaign targeting teens, the Project has extensive community action and in-school programs that mobilize volunteers and community groups throughout the island to spearhead prevention efforts. In 2012, the Hawaii Meth Project reached nearly 90,000 teens throughout the state with its prevention message. More than 10,200 students attended 67 presentations about the dangers of methamphetamine, and 22 Meth Awareness Day programs reached an additional 12,600 students throughout the state. Last year the Hawaii Meth Project also reached into communities, where more than 60 events helped spread the message about meth use to 63,000 teens statewide.
The Hawaii Meth Project has had a major impact in the state. According to a statewide survey, Hawaii's young people are significantly more aware of the dangers of trying meth and increasingly disapprove of trying the drug than before the launch of the Project. Teens increasingly report they have told friends not to use meth and the Hawaii Meth Project's campaign made them less likely to try or use the drug.
"Education, awareness, and parental involvement are the best tools to combat drug addiction, which overwhelmingly begins in the teen years," said Dr. Kevin Kunz, a physician and specialist in addiction medicine in Kailua-Kona and Past President of The American Board of Addiction Medicine Foundation. "Data shows that in order to effectively address current and future meth use we need to give teens the facts and make sure they fully understand how risky methamphetamine is. The Hawaii Meth Project has been very effective in getting that message to teens."
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, methamphetamine is one of the greatest drug threats to the nation. The agency recently reported that the drug is at its highest levels of availability and purity, and lowest cost since 2005 because of increased levels of meth imported from Mexico, and growing rates of small-scale domestic production. It is estimated that meth abuse costs the state of Hawaii more than $500 million annually in costs associated with law enforcement, social services, treatment, and lost productivity. Hawaii ranks second in the nation for meth-related treatment admissions, and according to Quest Diagnostics Drug Testing Indexª 2011 data, Hawaii also leads the nation for methamphetamine use in the workforce.
"Joining forces with the Meth Project is an extension of The Partnership's long-standing work against meth over the past decade, and it comes at a crucial time," said The Partnership at Drugfree.org President and CEO Steve Pasierb. "Prevention is critical to reducing demand for and the societal damage of methamphetamine use, and we are looking forward to working with the Hawaii Meth Project as it continues its efforts working to educate teens throughout the state. By joining together, and providing The Partnership's expertise to local efforts in Hawaii and all of the Meth Project states, we are taking an important step toward the goal of reducing meth use in the U.S."
The Meth Project first launched in Montana in 2005 to address the growing problem of methamphetamine use. The Project gained national attention for its stark and graphic creative approach, with campaigns directed by Academy Award nominees Darren Aronofsky and Alejandro González Iñárritu, and Oscar-winning cinematographer Wally Pfister. The research-based program, which also includes significant community outreach, had an immediate effect: Meth use declined dramatically in Montana, with teen meth use dropping by 63 percent, and meth-related crime falling by 62 percent.
As a result of the Project's success in Montana, the national Meth Project Foundation worked with seven additional states to implement the Meth Project prevention model, where it has had a major impact. Teens are significantly more aware of the risks of using methamphetamine, and teen meth use has dropped by 65 percent in Arizona, and 50 percent in Idaho. In 2011, the Project expanded further with the launch of MethProject.org, which took the Meth Project's message to a national audience of teens for the first time. The Meth Project has been cited by the White House as a model for the nation, and was rated the third-most effective philanthropic organization in the world by Barron's magazine in its most recent rankings.
About the Hawaii Meth Project
The Hawaii Meth Project is a non-profit organization that implements large-scale, research-based campaigns and community action programs to reduce methamphetamine use in the state. Central to its integrated campaigns is MethProject.org—a definitive source for information about meth for teens. The Hawaii Meth Project is affiliated with the Meth Project, a national non-profit organization aimed at significantly reducing meth use through public service messaging, public policy, and community outreach. For more information, visit HawaiiMethProject.org.
About The Partnership at Drugfree.org
Ninety percent of addictions start in the teenage years. The Partnership at Drugfree.org is dedicated to solving the problem of teen substance abuse. Together with experts in science, parenting, and communications, the nonprofit translates research on teen behavior, addiction and treatment into useful and effective resources for both individuals and communities. Working toward a vision where all young people will be able to live their lives free of drug and alcohol abuse, The Partnership at Drugfree.org works with parents and other influencers to help them prevent and get help for drug and alcohol abuse by teens and young adults. The organization depends on donations from individuals, corporations, foundations, and the public sector, and is thankful to SAG-AFTRA and the advertising and media industries for their ongoing generosity.
# # #