Prevention is Hope: Celebrating 10 Years Supporting RI Prevention Providers

May 10th, 2022 | viewpoint


As I reflect on the tenth anniversary of the Rhode Island Prevention Resource Center (RIPRC), I am amazed by how much we’ve been able to develop and influence the prevention field in RI.

The RIPRC is dedicated to providing training, technical assistance, and capacity-building resources to substance abuse prevention providers and their community partners. Sponsored by the RI Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals, the RIPRC has partnered with an array of providers who service a diverse community base, including but certainly not limited to:

  • Funded regional and municipal prevention coalitions
  • American Lung Association
  • Behavioral health crisis intervention services
  • CODAC Behavioral Healthcare.

Our role is to ensure the state and community prevention system has access to workforce development and capacity-building opportunities that meet their needs and evolve with the field. We’ve been successful due to the tremendous team here at JSI and our community partners. Over the past 10 years, we have provided more than 1,000 one-on-one technical assistance sessions and offered over 100 group training sessions on topics including:

  • RI Prevention Specialist Certification preparation
  • Positive community norms
  • Substance abuse prevention skills
  • Developing ethics policy in a prevention setting
  • Next steps in equity diversity and inclusion efforts
  • Peer recovery

I’ve always been drawn to prevention work because it is a space that focuses on opportunity, hope, and creativity. Prevention strategies are evidence-based and focus on systems, high need populations, and individuals disproportionately at risk for behavioral health disorders. A comprehensive public health approach to prevention can reduce and eliminate disparities in health and lead to better health outcomes for all.

As the prevention landscape evolves, the RIPRC plans to focus on health disparities and equity and increase project development strategies for prevention providers. We are fortunate to have strong community partnerships and are excited about the next PrevCon 2024!

Written by Shannon Spurlock

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