Eric Douglas Published

Agencies Offer Programs To Avoid Teen Drinking

Teenager in a yellow sweatshirt refuses different types of alcohol
State agencies are working together to help teens avoid alcohol as part of their back to school programs.
Вячеслав Думчев/ Adobe Stock

Students are headed back to school and two state agencies are working to help them avoid underage drinking.

The West Virginia Department of Human Resources’ Bureau for Behavioral Health (BBH) supports programs including Too Good for Drugs, Keep a Clear Mind and Positive Action. 

More than 90 schools receive support through Expanded School Mental Health grants or West Virginia Department of Education Project AWARE grants.  

“BBH aims to build protective factors like positive role models and a safe culture so that it is easier for all students to make good choices,” Commissioner Dawn Frohna said. “We appreciate our partners including WVABCA that have joined us in our mission to help students thrive in their homes, schools, and communities.”

For those interested in prevention programming visit West Virginia’s substance use prevention contacts and guidance at A new BBH Clearinghouse also provides a database of prevention, treatment, and recovery EBPs researched by state experts.

BBH funds several helplines operated by First Choice Services to assist West Virginians in need of behavioral health support. The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline and 844-HELP4WV (844-435-7498), which includes the Children’s Crisis and Referral Line, are available 24/7 with call, chat, and text options. 

The West Virginia Alcohol Control Administration’s Fall Safety Plan for Students starts in September with the 11th annual NO School Spirits PSA contest. The agency will also visit high schools to deliver its DUI Simulator Program.

For more information, visit or WVABCA’s Facebook page.

“With initiatives such as our PSA contest, students take part in prevention messaging to address the harms that can result from underage alcohol use,” Alchohol Commissioner Fred Wooton said. “WVABCA is committed to working with DHHR’s Bureau for Behavioral Health, the Governor’s Highway Safety Program, and other groups to deliver programs and services to protect our youth as a new school year gets underway.”

WVABCA will also hold its 3rd annual Alcohol Prevention, Enforcement, Education and Policy conference October 11-12, 2023, at Canaan Valley Resort for law enforcement, educators, community health specialists, prevention coordinators, and other stakeholders.