By the Kansas Office of the Governor
TOPEKA, Kan. – Governor Laura Kelly today announced that the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE), in partnership with the Kansas Alliance for Drug Endangered Children, is awarding nearly $2 million to 18 Kansas service agencies in the first round of All Hands on DECK (Drug Endangered Children of Kansas) grants. The grants will help these organizations better identify and support children living in an environment where a parent or other caregiver uses, distributes, manufactures, or cultivates illegal drugs.
“It is critical that we stop the devastating toll drug addiction and exposure have on our children,” Governor Laura Kelly said. “This funding will make resources and help available to local communities and law enforcement working to curb the generational impact drugs have on Kansas families.”
This is the first round of grants being provided through the $6 million Kansas received from the Bureau of Justice Assistance (Department of Justice) to address substance use and misuse, promote public safety, reduce overdose deaths, and support access to prevention, harm reduction, treatment, and recovery services in communities as well as the justice system.
Approximately 140,860 Kansas children are living in environments where their parent or caregiver uses substances, and an estimated 5,155 Kansas infants are born exposed to substances every year. Children living in drug environments are at risk for devastating effects, including severe neglect, physical, emotional, and sexual abuse, and developmental delays.
“We are committed to keeping Kansas kids safe, and that is exactly what these funds will do,” said KDHE Secretary Janet Stanek. “We trust that communities will work with the resources allocated to them to provide a focused approach in their respective communities.”
The selected community organizations will focus on developing a response to address drug endangered children that fits their community’s unique needs. Activities include providing training to multidisciplinary professionals; providing training on adverse childhood experiences and trauma-informed systems of care; establishing community drug drop boxes; and distributing care bags with necessities for children placed in custody.
The grants total $1,930,001.89.
The awardees are:
Central Kansas Partnership
Clay County Health Department
Elk County Sheriff’s Department
Finney County Community Health Coalition
Harvey County Health Department
Liberal Area Coalition for Families
Live Well Crawford County
Miami County Health Department
Mitchell County Regional Medical Foundation
Pottawatomie County Health Department
Pratt County DEC (Drug Endangered Children) Alliance
Prevention and Resilience Services
Riley County Health Department
Rise Up Reno Prevention Network
Sheridan County Health Department
Smith County Health Department
Thrive Allen County
Wilson County Health Department
Statewide partners include the National Alliance for Drug Endangered Children, Kansas Alliance for Drug Endangered Children, Wichita State University’s Center for Applied Research and Evaluation at the Community Engagement Institute, DCCCA, Inc., and Mid-West Regional Technical Transfer Center.
Additional grant awardees will be announced in Spring 2024.