Prevention Programs


Primary prevention programs include a broad array of prevention strategies directed at individuals not identified to be in need of Substance Use Disorder treatment. Primary prevention includes strategies, programs and initiatives that reduce both direct and indirect adverse personal, social, health and economic consequences resulting from problematic alcohol and other drug availability, manufacture, distribution, promotion, sales and use. The desired result of primary prevention is to promote safe and healthy behaviors and environments for individuals, families and communities.

Prevention Programs must use a strategic prevention planning framework to outline their programs, initiatives, and intended outcomes.  View the current Strategic Plan (PDF)

Contact SUD Prevention Unit

(209) 381-6800
480 East 13th Street
Merced, CA 95341

All In for Health - Growing Equity Coalition

This coalition is an all-inclusive group committed to addressing racism and discrimination based on income, education, age, gender, sexual orientation, disability, religion, immigration status & language. We work with and within communities to create a county where everyone has healthcare, healthy food options, green spaces, housing, transportation, a sense of belonging, and safety.  View the Coalition Website

Red Ribbon Week

Red Ribbon Week activities are held throughout Merced County during the end of October to promote local awareness and renew commitments to not use alcohol and other drugs.

Youth 2 Youth Conference

Youth 2 Youth is an annual youth leadership conference held in March. High school students are trained before the conference and then lead the conference the next day for middle school youth.

The conference focuses on building leadership skills and working with youth to build lives free of alcohol, drugs, and violence. Youth throughout the County are eligible to participate.

Youth 2 Youth Mentoring Program

Mentoring is a 16 week program offered after school at various schools in Merced County.

Mentors and mentees meet together in small groups each week. Each weekly session includes snacks and check-ins, group activities, Project ALERT! curriculum, and one on one mentoring.

Mentors are high school students who have been recommended for their character and interest in community service. Mentors are trained in the fall on confidentiality, communication skills and group facilitation. Mentees are 8th grade students identified as “in need”. In need could refer to academic, social or emotional needs the students is experiencing. Mentors and mentees are supported at their school sites by a school staff advisor.

The model is driven by peer relationships which are supported by adult allies and evidence based curriculum.

Community School-Based Drug Prevention Services

This program provides alcohol / drug education and prevention services to schools, businesses, community groups, and other agencies. Services include:

  • Alcohol / drug awareness presentations
  • Parent education
  • Teacher training
  • Workshops / seminars