Valley Community Services Board

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Prevention Services

Prevention Service offers a broad array of substance abuse prevention and mental health promotion activities for all ages. Below is a list of the different initiatives, programs, and training services offered by our Prevention Services Department. For more information, please contact our Prevention Services Coordinator at 540-213-7599.

Evidence Based Programming

Botvin LifeSkills Training (LST) is a research-validated substance abuse prevention program proven to reduce the risks of alcohol, tobacco, drug abuse, and violence by targeting the major social and psychological factors that promote the initiation of substance use and other risky behaviors. This comprehensive and exciting program provides adolescents and young teens with the confidence and skills necessary to successfully handle challenging situations. For more information about LifeSkills Training, please visit the website here or call our Prevention Coordinator at 540-213-7599


Camp Excel is a small alternative summer day camp for youth considered to be at risk for substance abuse.  Campers who meet criteria, range in age from 8 – 13, and we accept responsible Teen Mentors between ages 14 – 17.  For more information, please contact the Prevention Services Coordinator.


Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST) is for everyone 16 or older—regardless of prior experience—who wants to be able to provide suicide first aid. Shown by major studies to significantly reduce suicidality, the ASIST model teaches effective intervention skills while helping to build suicide prevention networks in the community. To learn more, click here.

For more information about ASIST, please call our Prevention Services Coordinator at 540-213-7599. 

SafeTALK is a half-day alertness training that prepares anyone over the age of 15, regardless of prior experience or training, to become a suicide-alert helper. Most people with thoughts of suicide don’t truly want to die, but are struggling with the pain in their lives. Through their words and actions, they invite help to stay alive. safeTALK-trained helpers can recognize these invitations and take action by connecting them with life-saving intervention resources, such as caregivers trained in ASIST. To learn more about SafeTALK, please visit their website here, or call our Prevention Services Coordinator at 540-213-7599
The Sibling Survivors of Suicide Loss site aims to provide a safe place for anyone who has lost a sister or brother to suicide. It’s a place to share memories, discuss your feelings and experiences, and to share photos. It’s a place to connect with others who also miss their sister or brother.
If you feel you are in a crisis, whether or not you are thinking about killing yourself, please call the Lifeline. People have called us for help with substance abuse, economic worries, relationship and family problems, sexual orientation, illness, getting over abuse, depression, mental and physical illness, and even loneliness. Website here.


Greater Augusta Prevention Partners (GAPP) Coalition: is a collaborative community group, whose focus is around pressing prevention issues and initiatives in the community.  Many agencies and individuals are involved with the Coalition and meetings are open to the public.  Please join us at the Augusta County Government Center – Smith Room West, the 2nd Wednesday of each month from  3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.  For more information please visit our website here.

Lock and Talk is a local initiative to decrease occurrences of completed suicide and increase suicide prevention awareness. This initiative is a collaboration between the State Health Planning Region 1, Suicide Prevention Committee  and Valley CSB Prevention Services.

Lock and Talk provides education and tools regarding "Means Safety". This is defined as keeping the lethal means in which most use to attempt or complete suicide can be kept safe by family, friends and local professionals.

They provide safety devices such as medication lock boxes, trigger locks/ cables, support material and consultation. They also provide trainings to the community; to include Mental Health First Aid, ASIST, SafeTalk, and SuicideTALK. For more information, please call the Prevention Coordinator at 540-292-0013, click on the Facebook link (left), or visit their website here.

Health Planning Region 1 (HPR 1) Suicide Prevention Pilot GrantThe HPR 1 Suicide Pilot Grant utilizes existing Community Services Board's prevention networks within Health Planning Region 1, in an effort to reduce suicide rates across the region.  The following strategies are currently being implemented

- Increasing and strengthening gatekeeper education

- Increasing help seeking behaviors

- Reducing access to lethal means

For more information contact Prevention Services Coordinator at 540-213-7599 or the HPR 1 Suicide Prevention Pilot Coordinator at 540-817-7766 or visit the website here.

Project Grows is a 10-acre, youth-oriented community farm in the rolling hills of Augusta County, Virginia, on Berry Farm Road. We are a non-profit whose mission is to improve the overall health of children and youth in Staunton, Waynesboro and Augusta County through community farming that includes hands-on experience, nutrition education, and access to healthy food. To learn more about Project Grows, please click here.

Meet Our Staff

Erin Botkin: As a native of Staunton, Erin brings a local feel tot he Prevention Services Department. A graduate of Virginia Tech with a B.S. in Psychology, Erin appreciates the opportunity to give back tot eh community that has contributed so much to her life experiences. Erin enjoys working with youth and engaging families through prevention opportunities.

Paula Woods: Paula has served as the Prevention Specialist since the spring of 2012. A New Jersey native, Paula is proud to reside in Augusta County after graduating from Bridgewater College with a B.S. in Psychology. Paula's inspiration and enthusiasm comes from the many elementary, middle, and high school students she has encountered and worked with during her career.


Lucy Fatula: Lucy has worked as a Prevention Specialist since the fall of 2015. With Staunton being her hometown, she has a passion for the wellness of those in the community she loves. Lucy graduated from Virginia Tech in 2008 with a bachelor’s in Interdisciplinary Studies. She loves working with youth of all ages and is grateful to have the opportunity to work with so many of them in the area.

To learn more about Virginia's statewide Prevention Initiatives, please click here.