Preventing Substance Abuse in Teens and Adults Starts Early

Preventing substance abuse early goes a long way in reducing addiction in the future. Drugs and alcohol use, especially in young people, may disrupt brain development, leading to ongoing substance use disorders and mental health issues. Community prevention programs and training have proven to be highly successful in combating substance abuse and reducing addiction.

Drug and alcohol counselor present ways to prevent substance abuse to team members.Along with a team of drug and alcohol counselors, Pathways Behavioral Services has partnered with several coalitions in Black Hawk, Bremer, Buchanan, Butler, Chickasaw and Grundy counties. To address substance abuse, addiction and even problems with gambling, these community coalitions offer numerous prevention measures including:

  • Increasing community awareness of substance abuse issues
  • Working to encourage positive substance use/abuse policy changes, both locally and statewide
  • Promoting positive activities for youth development and volunteerism
  • Reducing youth access to addictive substances such as tobacco and alcohol

Botvin LifeSkills Training: Proven to Cut Drug Use by 75% and Alcohol Use by 60%


For middle-school students, Pathways can provide Botvin LifeSkills Training. Developed by Dr. Gilbert J. Botvin, Botvin LifeSkills Training is a comprehensive substance abuse prevention program that focuses on targeting the social and psychological factors that initiate risky behaviors, rather than simply educating participants on the dangers of drug and alcohol use. The program has been proven to significantly reduce the risks of alcohol, tobacco and drug use by:

  • Teaching students the necessary skills to resist peer pressure to smoke, drink and use drugs
  • Helping to develop a healthy self-concept and confidence
  • Giving students the skills needed to cope with anxiety effectively
  • Increasing knowledge of the immediate consequences of substance abuse
  • Enhancing cognitive and behavioral competency to reduce and prevent a variety of health risk behaviors

Additional Prevention Education Programs

Youth Tobacco Programs

Pathways works with middle or high school students to develop peer and community education to fight against the use of addictive nicotine and tobacco products. The goal is to change people’s attitudes about tobacco use and reduce the use early on.

Workplace Training for Preventing Substance Abuse

Pathways offers consultations for substance abuse and tobacco use workplace policy issues or general advice. We also offer required two-hour drug-free workplace training for a cost of $20 per supervisor and a one-hour refresher training for $10 per supervisor. Group rates may apply.

Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs (ATOD) Presentations and Consultations

The ATOD Prevention Program is training focused on decreasing student use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs. Pathways provides presentations for elementary, junior high/middle school, high school and college students, driver’s ed classes, workplaces, churches and youth groups. We help to develop research-based programs that fit the needs of your school or entity. Pathways Behavioral Services also offers substance abuse counseling and consultation on workplace policy issues for tobacco, drug and alcohol use.

Preventing Substance Abuse – Articles and Information for Your Use

Pathways will provide evidence-based articles written by Pathways prevention staff for publishing in school, business or church newsletters. Articles can be selected based on your chosen substance abuse prevention topic(s). 

Pathways’ prevention programs are funded by the Iowa Division of Health Promotion, Prevention and Addictive Behaviors, the United Way, state and local grants, and individual and corporate donations. For more information about Pathways Prevention Services or to set up a service, email Teresa King at or call 319-235-6571.

    Sign-up for our newsletter