Contributed by Beth Cox
Johnson County has been selected to begin the Empowering Youth and Families Program (EYFP), which began in North Carolina and has shown tremendous success. EYFP’s goal is to help families grow and build on a core dynamic of open communication and a better understanding of middle school-aged youth and their caregivers’ unique relationships.
This family-focused program is a 10-week interactive program that gives families the tools to be built on the solid foundation that is already in place.The program’s goal is much larger than just learning and growing as a family and building a stronger drug-free community. Each week, families with middle school youth will receive supplies and dinner for the weekly meeting. During the meeting, caregivers and children will participate in separate sessions that provide age-appropriate training in the art of family building or information about opioid misuse. Finally, individual families will spend time learning about one another and building new, healthy skills and behaviors.
Beth Cox, EYFP Program Assistant for UT/TSU Extension in Johnson County, is excited to be given the opportunity to be a part of the solution in combating the opioid crisis that is now plaguing small rural counties across Northeast Tennessee and through Western North Carolina.
“I know this program can be a life-changer for participating families and the community as a whole,” Cox said. “The motto of EYFP is ‘Community is our superpower. Our power is in our communities.’ I love this county and would love to know this program has made a small positive imprint in the community as a whole.”
EYFP for Johnson County will begin Thursday, April 22, at 5:30 p.m. Any family with middle school-age children is invited to be a part of the fun-filled family-centered 10-week event. Those interested and want to know more, please contact the UT/TSU Extension Office at 423-727-8161. Taylor and Olivia Cox and Taylor Parsons will be three of the youth facilitators working with UT/TSU Extension Empowering Youth and Families Program that will begin on April 22, 2021, 5:30 p.m. at the Mountain City Church of Christ. Supper will be served at 5:30 p.m.