LCAHY Presents During Beaufort County School District’s Virtual Parent Connection Program

December 16, 2021

LCAHY Presents During Beaufort County School District’s Virtual Parent Connection Program

Low Country Alliance for Healthy Youth (LCAHY) presented “What Parents Need to Know About Substance Abuse Trends’” during Beaufort County School District’s (BCSD) Virtual Parent Connection Program.  Dr. Loretta Novince, a developmental/educational psychologist and Drug-Free Communities Grant (DFC)/ LCAHY’s consultant, presented the effects of substance use/abuse on the developing teen brain and risk factors.  She stressed that substance use/abuse is a pediatric public health issue. Dr. Novince also shared LCAHY’s Public Health Awareness Campaign “Be Part of the Solution”, which encourages the community to send clear messages that the use of alcohol and other drugs are unsafe, unhealthy, and illegal.  Laura Pirkey, LCAHY’s Project Director for the DFC grant and Youth Coalition Coordinator, focused on providing parents with prevention resources available via LCAHY’s website Online resources such as SAMHSA, NIDA, and were highlighted. SAMHSA’s “Talk They Hear You Campaign”, which was launched by the coalition in 2014, was featured and is promoted by LCAHY. In addition, she provided an overview of LCAHY’s youth coalition, Teens for Healthy Youth, whose vision is to promote positive teen health.  Laura Pumajero, bilingual liaison for BCSD, converted their PowerPoint presentations into Spanish and translated the presentations in a Zoom breakout room for Spanish-speaking parents.  LCAHY plans to work with the BCSD to provide prevention information and resources to parents in English and Spanish.

LCAHY Hosts First Face-to-Face Meeting Since COVID

November 29th, 2021

LCAHY Hosts First Face-to-Face Meeting Since COVID

LowCountry Alliance for Healthy Youth (LCAHY) hosted its first face-to-face board meeting since COVID with the option for members to join via Zoom. LCAHY celebrated its accomplishments during the year and thanked board members for their support.  They applauded LCAHY’s youth coalition, Teens for Healthy Youth (THY), for their efforts to promote positive teen health throughout the year and during COVID-19.  LCAHY board members and THY worked on identifying interventions for reducing youth access to marijuana and decreasing approval of youth use of marijuana. THY representatives stressed the importance of peer-to-peer education and utilization of the Prevention Plus Wellness Program with their peers. LCAHY looks forward to having more opportunities for face-to-face meetings and will begin working on plans to reapply for the second five-year cycle of the DFC grant.

Teens for Healthy Youth Trained in Prevention Plus Wellness Program

September 2021-December 2021


Teens for Healthy Youth Trained in Prevention Plus Wellness Program

Members of Teens for Healthy Youth (THY) in six area high schools were trained in Dr. Chudley Werch’s Prevention Plus Wellness (PPW) Program.  Dr. Werch developed a pre-recorded video training to be used specifically for THY Advisors and their THY members. THY members were trained in the SPORT Prevention Plus Wellness High School and Vaping PPW programs. Additionally, Hilton Head Christian Academy and Cross Schools THY members were trained in the In God’s Image PPW Program.  PPW encourages wellness-promoting behaviors to prevent teen substance use/abuse. In addition, PPW helps teens set positive goals for themselves. THY plans to use the PPW program to implement peer-to-peer education this spring to high school and middle school students to prevent teen use/abuse of alcohol and other drugs and to promote overall wellness.  Peer-to-peer education is an intervention strategy in LCAHY’s 12- Month Action Plan and aligns with THY’s vision to promote positive teen health.  To view Dr. Werch’s PPW video training specific to THY go to To learn more about THY go to

Bluffton & May River Teens for Healthy Youth Educate Community During Safety Spooktacular Event

Bluffton and May River High Teens for Healthy Youth (THY) educated the community on medicine safety during Bluffton Police Department’s Safety Spooktacular community event. THY provided community members THY’s Medicine Safety Checklist and LCAHY’s Rx Drop Box Location Fact Cards. In addition, THY members distributed LCAHY and THY informational brochures and resources to parents, grandparents, and caretakers. THY also educated the community at Bluffton High School’s Trunk-or-Treat Event Halloween Weekend. THY members distributed over 200 fact cards to educate the community on medicine safety and proper medicine disposal to prevent and reduce misuse of medicine by our youth. THY plans to educate the community annually during National Medicine Abuse Safety Awareness Month.

Teens for Healthy Youth Members Bluffton and May River High educate about Medicine Safety at Safety Spooktacular Event and provide THY and LCAHY resources to parents, grandparents, and caretakers. 

Lucia Valladera, Ethan Barrera, and Joshua Gonzales provide parents THY Medicine Safety Fact Card and LCAHY’s Year-Round Rx Drop Box Fact Card.

THY members pass out candy to kids at the Safety Spooktacular Event.

LCAHY Board Member Distributes Deterra Bags to Oral Surgeon, Dentist Office, & Bluffton Pharmacy

Marty Pauls provides deterra bags to Dr. Matt Mastrorocco of ROC Dental.LowCountry Alliance for Healthy Youth (LCAHY) Board Member, Dr. Martin Pauls DDS, distributed over 100 deterra bags to an oral surgeon, a dentist office, and the Bluffton Pharmacy. Placing the deterra bags in these locations will allow individuals convenient opportunities to properly dispose of prescription medicines and prevent medicine abuse. Dr. Pauls is open about his own son’s struggle with medicine abuse that resulted in death. He hopes his efforts can prevent others from accessing and abusing prescription medications. LCAHY works to educate about misuse of prescription drugs and has purchased Rx drop boxes for Bluffton Police Department and the Bluffton Beaufort County Government Building. LCAHY’s Rx Fact Card, which identifies locations where medicines can be dropped off year-round, is distributed through LCAHY members and provided at community events.


May River High School THY Assist in School’s First Annual PTO Holiday Extravaganza



May River High School THY Assist in School’s First Annual PTO Holiday Extravaganza


Teens for Healthy Youth (THY) May River High School (MRHS) participated in May River PTO’s Holiday Extravaganza for their students and parents.  There were multiple vendors, food trucks, games, activities, Santa and Grinch photo opportunities, and a snow machine to bring holiday cheer to the school community.  Hundreds of people showed up to enjoy the fun.  May River THY students were invited to host bingo and assist with the different activity stations.  Through this event, THY members had the opportunity to create awareness about THY and interact with the school community. This event coordinated by the MRHS PTO, was an effective way to bring stress-free fun to the families and students that participated.  This was also an opportunity for the PTO to be introduced to THY.  THY recognizes that stress can lead to unhealthy coping strategies such as substance use. THY  plans to partner with MRHS PTO annually in this holiday event and distribute THY’s Teen Stress Fact Card next year in this holiday stress-free event to promote healthy ways to cope with stress.

             May River THY promotes fun and stress-free activities at the holiday extravaganza.

Teens for Healthy Youth Bluffton High School Participate in Angel Tree Christmas Project

Teens for Healthy Youth members at Bluffton High school collected money and purchased a holiday gift for the Children’s Abuse Prevention Agency (CAPA) Angel Tree Project. The gift will be distributed to a Bluffton youth via Bluffton High School’s social worker.  THY, whose vision is to promote positive teen health, recognizes the importance of supporting youth who endured adverse childhood experiences (ACE’s). CAPA’s Angel Christmas Tree project serves children affected by child abuse and neglect. The annual service project provides an opportunity for THY to support one of its mission objectives which is to promote positive youth development through service. Teens for Healthy Youth, an initiative of the LowCountry Alliance for Healthy Youth, plan to participate annually in CAPA’s Angel Tree Project.


                                                    BLHS THY member shows the gift purchased by THY for CAPA’s Angel Tree Project.

Teens for Healthy Youth Distribute 3D Holiday Message During Bluffton Christmas Parade

Teens for Healthy Youth Distribute 3D Holiday Message During Bluffton Christmas Parade

Teens for Healthy Youth (THY) Bluffton High, May River High, and Hilton Head Christian
Academy marched in the Bluffton Christmas Parade and distributed LowCountry Alliance for
Healthy Youth’s (LCAHY) 3D Holiday Message to parade-goers. LCAHY’s 3D Holiday message
reminds individuals that drunk, drugged, or distracted driving is dangerous and illegal. LCAHY
was established in 2012 in response to numerous alcohol-related tragedies involving our youth.
Teens for Healthy Youth hope that their message will keep drivers, passengers, and others on
the roadway safe during the holiday season when impaired driving increases. THY served as
the grand co-marshals of the Bluffton Parade in 2019 and plan to participate yearly to create
awareness for THY and promote positive teen health during the holiday season.






THY Participate in AFSP Out of Darkness Community Walk 2021

November 7th, 2021

Teens for Healthy Youth Participate in AFSP Out of Darkness Community Walk

Teens for Healthy Youth (THY) from Hilton Head Christian Academy, Heritage Academy, May River High, and Bluffton High participated in the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Walk 2021 in Bluffton, SC. During the event, THY members staffed a resource table and distributed THY’s informational brochure to walk participants to create an awareness for Teens for Healthy Youth (THY). THY members also passed out THY’s Teen Stress Fact Card, THY’s Medicine Safety Tip Fact Cards, and LowCountry Alliance for Health Youth’s (LCAHY) Rx Drop Box Location Fact Cards. THY works to promote prevention plus health/wellness and educate about youth substance use and related risks behaviors such as stress, depression, and suicide. THY and LCAHY plan to participate in additional community events to educate on prevention, promote positive teen health, and create an awareness of the LCAHY coalition and THY.

LCAHY and THY Assist Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office at DEA’s Rx Take Back Day 2021

The Lowcountry Alliance for Healthy Youth, Teens for Healthy Youth, Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office, and Beaufort County Alcohol and Drug Abuse Department collaborated to collect unused prescription medications from residents.  Thirty-one cars dropped off medications.  Laila Holmes, a member of Teens for Healthy Youth at Bluffton High School, reached out to her mom to drop off their unused prescription medications and educated her mom on the importance of properly returning prescription medications. In addition, THY members passed out LCAHY’s Rx Fact Cards with year-round drop-off locations and THY’s Medicine Safety Tips Fact Card. LCAHY/THY, BCSO, and BCADAD have worked together annually at this event and plan to continue efforts to collect prescription medications in the spring.