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Prevention Coalition is back in business in Pagosa

By Amber Beye
Special to The SUN

Photo courtesy Amber Beye The Celebrating Healthy Communities Coalition-Pagosa Springs. In the back row, from left, are Kimberley Bradshaw, Mara Koch, Liz Alley, Lezlie White, Amber Beye, Erica DeVoti and Carol Anderson. In front are Nicole LaGioia-Lewis, Shane Lucero and Jenna Gregory.

Photo courtesy Amber Beye
The Celebrating Healthy Communities Coalition-Pagosa Springs. In the back row, from left, are Kimberley Bradshaw, Mara Koch, Liz Alley, Lezlie White, Amber Beye, Erica DeVoti and Carol Anderson. In front are Nicole LaGioia-Lewis, Shane Lucero and Jenna Gregory.

The Promoting Prevention Coalition is back with a new name, “Celebrating Healthy Communities- Pagosa Springs.”

There is also a new mission, a vision and new faces.

New members include Erica DeVoti, prevention coordinator of Archuleta School District 50 Jt.; Lezlie White, assistant director of Pagosa Springs Youth Center; Kimberley Bradshaw, associate director of G.O.A.L. Academy; Carol Anderson, PSMC worksite wellness center manager; Nicole LaGioia-Lewis, PSMC worksite wellness coordinator; Shane Lucero, San Juan Basin Health-Dragon Youth Project; Mara Koch, outreach and education coordinator for Archuleta County Victim Assistance Program; and Jenna Gregory, RSAPP AmeriCorps member.

New to the coalition is Amber Beye of San Juan Basin Health. Beye has taken on the role as Celebrating Healthy Communities’ director. Having grown up in Pagosa Springs, she comes with a strong passion to help Archuleta County become a healthy, thriving community. While there are new faces to the coalition, the group has two veterans from the Promoting Prevention era who provide a wealth of knowledge and support: Joanne Irons, director of Pagosa Springs Youth Center, and Liz Alley, community member.

The coalition’s mission: It is a coalition that believes in the power of working together to bring positive change in the health and wellness of the community. Members believe Archuleta County is a community that values a drug-free lifestyle, values youth by providing positive, healthy role models, and values working together to bring positive change.

The new Celebrating Healthy Communities has already begun work. In April, six members were trained as facilitators in Not On Tobacco (N.O.T.), a tobacco cessation program for youth. Also in April, one member was trained as a facilitator for Freedom From Smoking, an adult smoking cessation program.

The coalition recently completed a Community Readiness Survey to gauge the community’s readiness to address tobacco issues, including youth, young adult and adult use; secondhand smoke; and cessation. Efforts will concentrate on letting the community know that the coalition is addressing the issue, that there are cessation services to offer the community and, lastly, that efforts are being concentrated on secondhand smoke education.

Look for coalition members at the Park 2 Park Arts and Crafts Festival in Pagosa Springs on July 4 and 5. The coalition will also be at the Archuleta County Fair, Aug. 1-4.

For more information about the coalition, results of the Community Readiness Survey and about the tobacco cessation programs, or if you are interested in joining the efforts, contact Amber Beye at abeye@sjbhd.org or 335-2076.

This story was posted on June 13, 2013.