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Coalition meetings are held the second Wednesday of every month from 11:30 to 1:00 at the Marquette County Services Center at 480 Underwood Avenue in Montello. Everyone is welcome.

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Marquette County and surrounding communities in other counties are home to many agencies that provide services for alcohol and other drug abuse. Learn more

Our Mission and Vision


To improve lifestyle choices and options in Marquette County through positive cultural and environmental changes.


Marquette County is a place where the community members are increasingly involved, healthy and successful.

Latest News


Daily hospital emergency department visits involving those under age 21 who used alcohol combined with other drugs are 27 percent higher during this holiday period


A new study by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) reveals that daily underage drinking-related visits to hospital emergency departments are 11 percent higher during the Memorial Day weekend than they are on an average day. The latest Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN) report estimates that on an average day, there are 519 hospital emergency department visits involving underage alcohol use. For the three day Memorial Day weekend, however, the number of daily hospital emergency department visits jumps to 577.

The study also shows that the daily level of hospital emergency department visits involving those under age 21 that used alcohol combined with other drugs is 27 percent higher during this holiday weekend than the level on an average day (199 visits versus 156 visits).

Underage drinking poses an enormous public health risk -- approximately 5,000 people die each year from alcohol-related injuries connected to underage drinking," said SAMHSA Administrator Pamela S. Hyde, J.D. "Moreover, studies have shown that children who begin drinking before age 15 are six times more likely to develop alcohol problems than people who start drinking after they reach age 21. This study highlights the need for parents, families and communities to promote prevention messages and efforts designed to help young people enjoy themselves without engaging in underage drinking or drug use."

The study was developed as part of the agency’s strategic initiative on data, outcomes, and quality - an effort to inform policy makers and service providers on the nature and scope of behavioral health issues. It is based on the 2008 DAWN report. DAWN is a public health surveillance system that monitors drug-related hospital emergency department visits reported throughout the nation.

A copy of the study is available at Spotlight Underage Drinking 2010

Information and materials on how to help prevent underage drinking are available at:



Parents Who Host Lost the Most!

Text your Teen and Keep them Safe!

TEXT! Texting a teen on prom night or during graduation parties can send a powerful message. You can use your social networks to encourage parents to text their children. Here are some sample texts PARENTS can use:

 Before or during the evening:

   Let me know what u r doing 2nite.  

Let me know who is (or is going to be) at the party. R his/her parents going 2 b home?  

Thinking of u and hoping ur having a great time!...   We love u & want u 2 have a fun & safe night.  

Have fun 2nite. Remember, alcohol can lead u 2 say and do things u wish u hadn’t.  

Remember your promise to us. Be safe tonight.   Have fun 2nite. Wanted 2 remind u of the rules: no drinking or drugs!

Early Evening:  

Have fun, b safe! Call if u need me.  

I trust you to make good decisions 2nite  

How is the party going?   Have fun with ur friends. Remember, we are always here if u need us.  

Where r u? Love u.   Remember our discussion about drinking. We love you too much to see anything bad happen.  

It took me forever to write this text, but wanted to say I’m thinking of you. I love you.

Late Evening:   Let me know if u need a ride. I will be right there.  

I’m so glad you are my son/daughter. You make me so proud!  

Remember to always make good decisions. It only takes 1 bad 1 to ruin all of the good ones.  

Don’t forget your curfew. Call me if you need anything.  

Be careful coming home. I know you made good decisions, but be cautious of others who aren’t as smart as you!


Teen Court begins in Marquette County

Marquette County has a new option for putting teens who are accused of breaking a law through the justice system with Teen Court. The process begins when a teen is arrested or cited. An officer may decide that the teen and the situation are a good fit. After the facts are reviewed by Healthy Communities Healthy Youth Mobilizer Heather Kierzek and the District Attorney, if approved, the juvenile is entered into the teen court system rather than the regular court route. To go through teen court, the teen must admit guilt.
The teen will then go before a jury made up of peers, who will ask questions about the incident, review police reports and school information before determining a sentence. The jurors are student volunteers from youth groups that are led by Healthy Communities Healthy Youth. Training is given to the jurors prior to serving.
The sentence is then reviewed by Kierzek and the D.A. If approved, the sentence is monitored by Kierzek and once completed, the offense is removed from the record of the teen. A juvenile may only go through teen court once. If they offend again, they must go through regular court.
The whole process was recently put into motion when a juvenile Marquette County female was pulled over by an officer after she was observed driving erratically by continuously slowing down and speeding up. The teen had been trying to get the cruise control to work properly on her vehicle and received a ticket for speeding. The case was turned over to the teen court.
According to the offending teen, she was nervous going to teen court because she was not sure what to expect. Once everything was underway, she was more at ease and explained what happened the night she received her ticket to the jury.
After hearing her side of the story, the jury went into deliberation. While the younger teens, who don’t drive yet, had a harder time relating to the incident, the older teens felt they could relate to the situation. In the end, she was sentenced to seven hours of community service and jury duty on a future case.
It was a learning experience for all involved. Those serving on the jury mentioned how they had to negotiate with the rest of the jury for what they felt was a fair sentence. The offender, who had been extremely embarrassed by her ticket, had to come face-to-face with other teens and talk about her offence.
The mother of the teen also liked the system because she felt it makes teens acknowledge what they did wrong and repay their debt to society on their own. In this situation a parent can’t just bail their child out.
The teen in this case has already finished part of her community service. Teen Court is anticipating their next case in April.

Schools take part in Social Norms Campaigns

Both Montello and Westfield Jr./Senior High Schools have been busy promoting a Social Norms campaign focusing on the dangers of taking prescription drugs belonging to someone else. Instead of solely focusing on the negative aspects that are associated with this behavior, the campaign relies on information from the Youth Behaviors Risk Study (YBRS) taken by students in Marquette County.
When students hear about others taking prescription drugs that do not belong to them, they may start to feel as if they are the only ones not taking them.  The YBRS shows that most kids are not taking part in this behavior, and uses this data to educate the student body. This is done through staff, posters, and peer group activities during the lunch hour. 

Hope House is resource for teens in violent relationships

Teen dating violence is similar to domestic violence. It is a pattern of abusive tactics that are used to gain and maintain power and control in a dating relationship. Abuse can be emotional, verbal, digital, physical, sexual and/or financial. One of the unique aspects to teen dating violence include more use and abuse of technology, abusive partners going to the same school, and teens help as they struggle to find independence. Warning signs of and abusive relationship includes a partner that constantly checks up on a teen through calls and texts, acts extremely jealous or controlling, controls who they hang out with and blames the teen for things they didn’t do. If a teen reaches out to you, it is important to listen, believe and support them. Be non-judgmental and make it clear you don’t blame them and that you respect their choices. If you need free and confidential services to assist a teen or adult in an abusive relationship, Hope House of South Central Wisconsin provides advocacy and shelter to people affected by domestic/dating violence and sexual assault. All services are free, including a 24/7 helpline, individual counseling, legal assistance, support groups, children’s programming, safety planning, 24/7 on-call emergency response, shelter and community education. The 24-hour helpline is 1-800-584-6790.




In Your Community


For more information on Neshkoro Area HCHY activities please contact Tara Chesebro.

Neshkoro news: Welcome Tara Chesebro to HCHY!


For more information on Endeavor Area HCHY activities please contact Sue Allen.

Endeavor News: To join the Endeavor EPIC parent's group, please contact Sue Allen. Bring the kids to play while parents talk.


For more information on Montello Area HCHY activities please contact Tiffany Lodholz.

Montello News: Montello's PIE group meets weekly on Tuesdays at 10:30 a.m. Parents and kids of all ages welcome. Learn more

Marquette County

In 2011, excessive alcohol consumption in Marquette County cost $17.7 million and contributed to at least 154 alcohol-related hospitalizations. View the full report.


For more information on Westfield Area HCHY activities please contact Sandy Vogel.

Westfield News: Westfield implements "Life of an Athlete" program and works to change athletic code. Learn more