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To address youth and adult substance abuse through a collaborative, community-wide approach that increases recognition, education, prevention, treatment, and recovery to improve the quality of life for individuals and families of Jeff Davis County.
JDSAC Project Coordinator
Ivey Grace Churchwell!
Ivey Grace was born and raised in Hazlehurst, GA, where she now lives with her husband. She is a proud alumna of both Jeff Davis High School and Georgia Southern University where she obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Relations. She enjoys making new Pinterest recipes and traveling. A fun fact about Ivey Grace is that she has taught over 200 kids how to swim!
Before joining JDSAC as the Project Coordinator, she served as a Marketing Director for a local Chick-fil-A. Some of her duties in this role were to maintain community sponsorships, in-town involvement, and all things marketing. Ivey Grace says that, "It was so fun getting to serve a community of people, but I am so glad to be back in Hazlehurst serving lifelong residents that all have the same goal, to see our community grow and thrive". Ivey Grace's vision for her new role is to increase awareness in the community and showcase all of the great work that Jeff Davis Hospital is pursuing and pushing towards daily.
The Jeff Davis Substance Abuse Coalition (JDSAC) was founded in August 2018, through a federal grant awarded to the Jeff Davis County Board of Health. The purpose of the JDSAC is to promote interagency, community-wide collaboration to develop and implement programs and services to reduce morbidity and mortality related to substance abuse in Jeff Davis County.
The JDSAC focuses on the following areas:
Foster community-wide recognition of the opioid addiction crisis among Jeff Davis County residents through education and awareness.
Identify, leverage and upgrade existing educational resources to prevent future substance abuse problems.
Educate providers in order to reduce over-prescription.
Identify, leverage and upgrade local health resources in order to provide screening and treatment services to those in need.
Since its founding in 2018, the coalition has grown to include 23 active community partners who represent diverse community sectors such as healthcare, entrepreneurship, housing, child welfare, counseling, law enforcement, education, and faith-based. The coalition continues to accept new partners and expansions.
In December 2018, the JDSAC hosted a “data boot camp” for coalition partners. The training session highlighted vital statistics and findings on the opioid crisis at county, state, and national levels. Many of the statistics for Jeff Davis County were alarming; it has consistently placed among the highest counties in Georgia for opioid prescription rates and hospitalizations due to opioid-related overdose. Jeff Davis County is also one of the top five counties in Georgia for Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS), an indicator of maternal substance abuse. However, there were also optimistic figures. Since the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) was implemented statewide, opioid prescription rates in Georgia have fallen significantly. Overall, the boot camp played a pivotal role in helping to increase awareness of coalition members and identify the most significant problems in Jeff Davis County.
JDSAC partners engaged in a planning process that identified tangible strategies for raising community awareness concerning Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) and expanding available resources at the local level and is working toward practices that will help to address the issues of improving access to care. Explore this page for links to the 2019-2022 Strategic Plan.
If you or your organization is interested in making a positive impact within the community, please join us at the next JDSAC’s meeting. Meeting dates are posted on the JDSAC Facebook page.
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