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    SCITUATE

    Scituate awarded new grant to curb underage drug and alcohol abuse

    Scituate will get $625,000 over the next five years to continue efforts to reduce drinking and substance abuse among the community’s youth.

    The money comes from the Office of National Drug Control Policy and will be used by the Scituate FACTS Coalition, which formed in 2011. This is the second grant the community group has received from the federal Drug Free Communities Support program.

    Among its achievements, the coalition lists reducing the percentage of youth reporting binge drinking in the last 30 days to 22 percent — down from 38 percent who reported having five or more drinks of alcohol at a time in 2011.

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    The percentage of students who reported using marijuana and driving with someone who has been drinking also went down, according to a coalition statement.

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    The statement said the coalition wants to reduce those numbers even further, and to increase community participation in the efforts.

    “Scituate is thrilled by this news, since our first grant ends this month,” said Annmarie Galvin, who cochairs the FACTS Coalition. “It’s awesome that we can continue the important work into the future. We see the grass-roots efforts work. Prevention works.”

    She said the public is invited to the group’s next open meeting on Sept. 26 at 6:30 pm at the Scituate Town Library, 85 Branch St.

    Johanna Seltz can be reached at seltzjohanna@gmail.com.