Welcome to Soaring Over Meth and Suicide (SOMS), a division of Nebraska Urban Indian Health Coalition’s website. SOMS is a substance abuse prevention program serving EVERYONE in Douglas, Dodge, Cass, Washington, Blair and Sarpy counties in Nebraska.
I am the Project Director for the SOMS department, and I would like to share with you my experiences and insight on prevention. When I first started at this position, almost five years ago, I am sure like most people my ideas around what prevention is was teaching youth the following for example; the D.A.R.E program, education and pamphlets and that told parents and kids all about the dangers of drugs, but prevention is actually much deeper than that, and it is for people of all ages.
It starts with family and the roots that anchor us, the traditions and practices that bind us, and the knowledge and wisdom that teaches and directs us. Whether or not you are in relationship, have children or are single with no children you are and have a family. Family is more than someone you are related to by blood; family is whomever you consider family.
What and how you do things in your family have a much larger and longer impact than was first realized. Have you ever been having a really bad day, and someone said or did a small act of kindness that turned it all around? Think about that for a second, how long ago did that happen that you still remember it, and how much time did it take out of that person’s life?
Prevention at home, at school or out in the community is about the everyday things that we do to support, teach and guide each other. When we create a welcoming and safe environment for ourselves, we strengthen the protective factors and resilience for everyone.
Sometimes we get bogged down with the data, and the scientific reasoning for doing this or that simply put prevention is about making an intentional choice to be a positive, supportive role model, friend, co-worker and community member. It is about teaching through action.
A good place to start is the Search Institute, check out their 40 Developmental Assets. We would love to hear from you, so please feel free to share your thoughts, ideas, inspirations, stories and more, below.
Prevention Project Director