Lee’s Summit CARES (LSC), formally known as the Drug Referral Exchange, has been in business since 1985. The name was changed in 1999 and the mission was revised to include the discussion of youth violence in our community.
LSC is located in the Southeastern part of Jackson County. Raytown, Greenwood, Lake Lotawana, Greenwood, Blue Springs, Lone Jack, Raymore-Peculiar and Grandview surround us. Our current population is over 100,000 and continues to grow. New programs have been developed over the years determined by the organization’s commitment to an “ask for” and “listen to” response regarding the expressed needs and desires of the citizens of the community. Four community safety surveys have been given over the last nine years. Due to the results of the most recent survey, LSC was able to purchase a drug dog for the police department. These surveys report that drug dogs like “Griff” serve as the number one deterrent to substance abuse in the schools.
LSC has made inroads in collaborating with other communities, coalitions, and organizations. These efforts have helped to build strong alliances with neighboring communities and organizations that share our mission. This work maximizes our ability to provide programs and resources to the larger population that may not have been available before.
Our commitment to community partnerships includes engaging parents and students as well as representatives from ReDiscover Mental Health, Lee’s Summit Medical Center, Truman Medical Center, St Luke’s East Medical Center, and Preferred Family Healthcare. Outside the medical domain, we partner with the Lee’s Summit Police Dept., Parks and Recreation, the Lee’s Summit Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street, Lee’s Summit City Government, Ministerial Alliance, PTA Area Council, Lee’s Summit School District, Youth Advisory Board, Metropolitan Community Colleges - Longview, John Knox Village and many local businesses.
Lee’s Summit CARES is an excellent model that demonstrates how organizations can collaborate for the greater good of the community. LSC has 15 board members, 60 at large members as well as a Community of Character Council, the Partnership to Prevent Risky Behaviors Committee, a Parenting Committee, a Fundraising Committee and a Youth Advisory Board. Currently the staff consists of a director and two program coordinators.
Lee’s Summit CARES (LSC) is a 30-year old 501(c)(3) community coalition dedicated to preventing youth substance use and violence, empowering positive parenting and promoting exemplary character. The Coalition is a Year 8 Federal Drug-Free Communities (DFC) grantee and has strong relationships with more than 50 local partners representing the 12 DFC sectors, which include education, law enforcement, health care, businesses, churches, civic groups, media, students and parents.
Some highlights of our 2016 programming include:
LSC’s most pressing needs are:
“A healthy and safe community for children, youth and families of the Greater Lee’s Summit area.” This is the vision of Lee’s Summit CARES (LSC). If you’ve been paying attention to the news lately, it may seem a lofty goal. More Americans now die every year from drug overdoses than they do in motor vehicle crashes.[i] Heroin abuse has increased by more than 200% in the past decade, affecting young adults more than any other age group and hitting Midwest America hardest[ii]. Statistics can be scary, but comfort comes from the knowledge that Lee’s Summit CARES is working daily to prevent drug abuse and violence within our community. Prevention is a word that LSC defines itself by, but it’s one that doesn’t elicit much excitement when used in everyday speech. This is in large part because of all the unknowns that come with prevention work. Will Lee’s Summit’s small-town feel succumb to youth violence in the streets? Will we be the next Midwest town with heroin needles littering our sidewalks? Will our youth fall victim to the opioid crisis? If Lee’s Summit CARES succeeds in our work, these are scenarios we’ll never need to worry about. By providing bullying prevention courses in the schools, offering parenting classes around the community, enhancing character throughout Lee’s Summit and implementing proven methods of drug and alcohol prevention, Lee’s Summit CARES seeks to maintain this community as the healthy, thriving, safe place that we currently know it to be. So while prevention work may not have the appeal of a “quick fix,” we rest assured of our deep value by remembering Benjamin Franklin’s sage wisdom that “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” We hope you will partner with Lee’s Summit CARES as we continue our work to keep Lee’s Summit a healthy and safe community for our children, youth and families.
 Boticelli, M. & Donovan, S. “It's Time for Congress to Provide the Funding We Need for the Opioid Epidemic.” June 17, 2016. Published Letter.
 Cook, Lindsey. “The Heroin Epidemic in 9 Graphs.” U.S. News and World Report. August 19, 2015. http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/data-mine/2015/08/19/the-heroin-epidemic-in-9-graphs
[i] Boticelli, M. & Donovan, S. “It's Time for Congress to Provide the Funding We Need for the Opioid Epidemic.” June 17, 2016. Published Letter.
[ii] Cook, Lindsey. “The Heroin Epidemic in 9 Graphs.” U.S. News and World Report. August 19, 2015. http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/data-mine/2015/08/19/the-heroin-epidemic-in-9-graphs
Becoming a Love and Logic Parent program is a parenting workshop designed by
the Cline/Fay Institute. Love and Logic provides parents and care givers with
practical strategies for preventing and reducing behavioral problems. Lee’s
Summit CARES offers the program at least ten times annually through three
formats. Love and Logic Early Childhood Parenting Made Fun targets
parents with children 0-6 years. Parenting the Love and Logic Way offers
strategies for parents with children of any age, with one course specifically
targeting parents of teens. Nine Essential Skills for the Love and Logic
Classroom is offered to educators. Each class runs for five weeks and meets
for 1.5 hours, one day a week.
Lee’s Summit CARES uses the following outcomes to measure short-term success.
In 2017, by the end of their 5-week Love and Logic session:
The Alberta Family Wellness Initiative
advises that “adverse childhood experiences significantly increase the risk of
developing mental health problems, including posttraumatic stress disorder,
depression, and addiction.” LSC seeks to
decrease the number of youth in our community who grow up in negative
environments by educating parents on how to provide a healthy environment and
appropriate experiences for a child’s brain development.
complete a pre-test on the first day of class and a post-test on the last day
of class. The test addresses the following: behavior concerns and progress
toward addressing concerns, knowledge of Love and Logic behavioral strategies
and increased awareness of community resources that support healthy family
development. Attendance is tracked through sign in sheets.
One parent, whose 2-year old son has autism, reported that after implementing Love and Logic parenting strategies with her son, he “stopped hitting her and started kissing her”. She also reported that his daycare teachers noticed a significant improvement in his daily behavior.
The purpose of the Alcohol Retailer Training (ART) is to provide information to clerks and managers regarding the laws for selling alcohol in Missouri responsibly. It is a two-hour class that provides information on:
LSC partners with the Lee’s Summit Police Department to provide training to those individuals who have failed a compliance check by selling to a minor. This diversion training is held at the Lee’s Summit Police Department and facilitated by Lee’s Summit CARES on a monthly basis. Each participant is ordered to attend these mandatory classes by the City Prosecutor. A certificate of completion is provided to the City Prosecutor as proof of attendance and participation. In 2016, LSC led 9 diversion classes for 18 participants.
LSC offers an additional community course to local businesses who sell alcohol on premise. LSC hosted 6 community trainings for 62 participants.
The short-term success is measured by quarterly compliance rates. LSC’s goal is keep our compliance average at 80% or above.
Participants of Alcohol Retailer Training begin the training by taking a pretest and then end with a post test. The participants also do a short evaluation of the class.
The goal is for 95% of participants to improve their test score and 85% to rate the training worthwhile.
In 2016, LSC held 15 ART trainings for 80 participants. 100% of participants increased their knowledge and 98% rated the training worthwhile.
Students who take the Alcohol Retailer Training are aware of the repercussions of those who are caught selling alcohol are less likely to sell alcohol to minors.
Studies confirm that adults are the number one source of alcohol for youth. In order to decrease the availability of alcohol to minors, restaurants and businesses must sell alcohol responsibly by checking Identification of each underage buyer.
The long-term success of this program is measured by the results of compliance checks conducted four times each year. Without enforcement, businesses would be more likely to sell alcohol to minors and our compliant rates would be lower than 70%. Our compliant rate over the last four years:
100% of off premise stores are being checked for compliance.
Retailer compliance checks are conducted quarterly by the Lee's Summit Police Department. In 2016, LSPD conducted 95 compliance checks. 100% of off premise stores are checked for compliance.
Lee’s Summit CARES and the Lee’s Summit Police Department work with the DEA
bi-annually to host Drug Take-Back events so that unused and expired
medications are kept of the reach of youth. The Take-Back initiative also
allows citizens to dispose of medications in an environmentally safe manner.
Success is defined by the number of participants, weight of drugs collected by the DEA, number of host sites participating, evaluation of communication tool success, and event evaluations completed by LSC volunteers and LSPD Officers.
Evaluation goals include:
Research shows twice as many Americans regularly misused prescription drugs than the number of those who regularly used cocaine, hallucinogens, heroin and inhalants combined. The same study reveals more than 70% of people abusing prescription pain relievers got them through friends or relatives, which includes raiding the family medicine cabinet (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2011).
2,500 teens begin abusing prescription drugs each day
Next to marijuana, prescription drugs are the most common drugs used by teens to get high.
Since 2010, more than 7993 pounds of expired and outdated medications were collected from citizens, achieving the goal of keeping these medications out of the hands of youth and out of landfills and water systems.
Lee’s Summit CARES (LSC) unites community partners to
develop confidence and self esteem in local youth to refuse the influence of
alcohol and drugs.
LSC facilitates a city-wide Youth Advisory Board (YAB) of students
from the three Lee’s Summit high schools. YAB creates and implements two campaigns during the school year: an anti-drug campaign in the fall to coincide with
Homecoming and Red Ribbon Week events, and the Celebrate Sober campaign in the
spring to coincide with Prom and Graduation season.
Lee’s Summit CARES also helps support middle and high school
SMART Clubs that incorporate substance use prevention and distracted driving. Students plan monthly substance-free
activities for their peers.
Each month, adults and youth convene as part of the
Partnership to Prevent Risky Behaviors Task Force (PPRB). This committee is charged with conducting community assessments, creating
collaborative prevention approaches, and tracking enforcement activities.
Lee’s Summit CARES is viewed by community institutions and leaders as the content expert on youth substance use issues. The agency focuses on providing up-to-date and reliable research and information on substance use issues to youth and adults. Coalition volunteers and partners also focus on population-level strategies to reduce underage substance use and access to these substances. These goals were supported by the following objectives:
Through its prevention work with students and the
community, LSC hopes to reduce youth substance abuse and violence to create a
healthy and safe community for the Greater Lee’s Summit area.
The Drug Free Communities grant Core Measure data measures underage substance use every two years. Data regarding youth use and perceptions of illegal substances will be assessed in 2017. In addition, student surveys help inform Coalition prevention efforts.
2015 Core Measure data shows that 21% of students used alcohol in the last 30 days, 14% used marijuana in the last 30 days; 7.6% misused prescription drugs in the 30 days, and 7% of students used tobacco in the last month.
The 2015 marijuana perception survey was completed by 497 middle and high school students. It was first implemented in 2012. Data in 2015 was consistent with 2012 findings. Both middle (33.9%) and high school (78%) of students report easy access to marijuana in Lee’s Summit. Students once again reported they feel it is safer to drive high than drunk.
The 2016 Celebrate Sober/Project Graduation survey was completed by 764 randomly sampled junior and senior high school students.
Lee’s Summit CARES actively revises and adapts programs to meet the needs of the community. Program evaluations and community assessments program curriculum have been adapted over the years to keep pace with the changing needs of the community.
LSC is currently in year two of implementing bullying prevention activities at the middle school level that include:
Love and Logic classes remain a strong component of our community outreach. LSC has seen an increase in the number of court referrals for the Love and Logic classes, and more Lee’s Summit residents are applying for city scholarships. The Community Parent Assessment survey completed in 2016 by 450 parents, grandparents and guardians will guide LSC’s efforts to expand its programming opportunities so they are more accessible for today’s generation of parents.
LSC’s Parent Liaison Program for the residents at Sage Crossing, a government subsidy housing complex, has been a big success, garnering community support and receiving COMBAT’s Step Up Award for 2016. The Parent Liaison works closely with the city, the Lee’s Summit Police Department Crime Reduction Team, Meadow Lane Elementary and Bernard Campbell Middle School to address the risk factors and provide help with the protective factors, such as building individual parent relationships in the school and community. The program has received additional funding to expand it to several other neighborhoods in Lee’s Summit and participation has nearly doubled.
LSC continues to work with our Youth Advisory Board to create an educational campaign for youth and families regarding the harms of marijuana. As an organization that combats youth substance abuse and violence, our concern is the potential legalization of marijuana in Missouri. Based on the significant increase of youth use of marijuana in other states who have legalized the substance and aware of the fact that youth use increases as social stigma decreases, LSC anticipates a negative impact on Missouri youth and families. Youth Advisory Board members also receive training on the negative impact of alcohol, tobacco, opioids, and prescription drug misuse.
LSC is proud to have sustained the Love and Logic parenting program for 16 years, the Community of Character for 13 years and the Partnership for Preventing Risky Behaviors for 13 years. The community support we receive is incredible.
Rachel Nelson-Segobia has dedicated both her professional and personal life to non-profit work that is committed to empowering young people. A graduate of Lee's Summit High School class of 2001, Rachel received her Bachelors of Science from Valparaiso University in Indiana, where she studied International Economics and Cultural Affairs. She graduated with her Masters of Science in Non-profit Administration from Louisiana State University - Shreveport.
Rachel began her non-profit career working with the Hispanic Mission Gloria Dei in Valparaiso, Indiana, where she assisted in translations, fundraising and the start up of an English-speaking pre-school for Spanish speaking youth. Rachel's next career move was to the Girl Scouts, first as a District Field Executive with Girl Scouts of Riverland Council in LaCrosse, Wisconsin, where Rachel trained volunteers, recruited girl members, coordinated international travel opportunities for girls, and wrote and implemented a grant that taught teenage girls how to identify a problem within their community to design and create a sustainable solution to that problem. During her work in La Crosse, Rachel was selected as one of three representatives from the United States to attend a World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts leadership seminar in Cuernavaca, Mexico. Soon thereafter, she was hired as Director of Membership and Marketing with USA Girl Scouts Overseas - North Atlantic in Pisa, Italy. During her three years overseas, Rachel worked in Italy, Spain, Germany, Belgium, Amsterdam, and Turkey. She worked to build community relations, implement a public relations campaign, and manage a volunteer program of more than 500 volunteers. Most recently, Rachel's work with the State of Louisiana's Department of Children and Family Services provided her with insight into public administration and the judicial system. She represented the State in court and assisted non-custodial parents in workforce development.
Lee’s Summit CARES, a community coalition, collaborates with several sectors; including education, public safety, city government, businesses, medical, faith, media and family. On the Board of Directors, there are liaisons from the city council, the school board and First Call.
LSC is a United Way Agency and receives COMBAT funds, collaborates on programs with ReDiscover Mental Health, the Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City (HCFGKC), the Greather Lee’s Summit Health Care Foundation, Truman Medical Center, United Way, Rotary Club, Lee’s Summit School District, Lee’s Summit Police Department and First Call. In 2009, LSC received the Drug Free Community Grant award by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and in 2016 LSC received the competitive Year 8 Drug Free Communities grant.
LSC is a member of the Lee’s Summit Chamber of Commerce, Community Anti-Drug Coaltion of America (CADCA), ACT Missouri and First Call.
As the director of Lee's Summit CARES, I follow the lead of the Board of Directors. The director and staff annually reviews the strategic plan, the by-laws, the policies, and organizational charts. LSC has been adding one or two new policies each year as the need arises. Part of the review process directly impacts our collaboration with United Way by ensuring that we follow their rules of compliancy. The board training component is scheduled to be updated this year in efforts to increase board member engagement. The President of the Board approves the monthly agenda prior to distribution.
As the director, I am in charge of managing the staff and making work assignments. I make daily work decisions, but decisions that affect the budget and the overall mission of the organization are voted on by the Board. There are two Program Coordinators, one oversees prevention and one oversees community relations and finances. I complete annual evaluations each year with the help of two board members. Susan Coffman, a program coordinator, works closely with me and the treasurer to establish the annual budget that is taken to the Board for approval.
As Director for Lee’s Summit CARES, I work for and report to the Board of Directors. The Board completes my annual evaluation and creates a work plan for me to follow. The Board of Directors has four officers: President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer. There are eight standing committees: Parenting, Partnership to Prevent Risky Behavior, Marketing, Finance, Public Relations, Fundraising, Holly Festival and the Character Council. I attend each of these committee meetings on a regular basis to stay current with what is being proposed. There are six Board meetings and five At-large meetings annually. All items that require a vote are brought to the Board meetings for review and discussion. Items that need board approval are the annual budget, treasurer’s report, and changes in policies, by-laws and programs.
The At-large meeting allows us to update members on what is happening in the organization and issues that are facing the community. LSC also features a speaker at these meetings who informs us of other work being done by non-profits in the area. These speakers add to the collaborative nature of the organization.
Indirect Public Support HelpIndirect public support represents revenue received through solicitation campaigns. This includes funding United Way and other federated fundraising organizations, but does not include donor designated contributions.
Earned Revenue HelpEarned revenue represents income generated in direct exchange for a product or service.Earned income includes income from government contracts.
Lee’s Summit CARES is a financially sound organization. Every expenditure is approved through our budget and our grant expectations. Due to our positive financial growth we had our first audit in 2010. Our major funders are SAMHSA- Drug Free Communities, COMBAT, Feld Trusts, Gourley Foundation, and United Way. As a staff, we annually match in-kind donations to the grants and programs provided. We have a 100% in-kind match.
Part of our strategic plan is to broaden our financial base so that programs can be sustained and new programs begun to address growing community needs.
In 2011 we had our first community fundraiser, Lee’s Summit’s Got Talent. This year, we are hosting our seventh Got Talent show in June of 2017. The competition is limited to performers ages 18 and under from the Kansas City Metro area. This will allow us to offer a $5,000 scholarship grand prize and a $500 scholarship for the crowd pleaser prize. The success of the show continues to grow due to the positive reactions of the audience.
The community partnerships are important to help Lee’s Summit CARES sustain the work of the organization.
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