Drug Free Clubs of America, Belmont County

Judge Mark Costine and the Belmont County Juvenile Court are proud supporters of the “Drug Free Clubs of America”. This program enables youth in Belmont County to have a voice in speaking out against using illegal drugs when they become a member of the Drug Fee Clubs of America in their local high schools affiliated with the program.

This program was introduced into Belmont County by the dedication and hard work of Martins Ferry Chief of Police John McFarland. The program continues to grow and expand in Belmont County with the support of numerous businesses, community organizations, donations from individuals, and the parent volunteers helping to make the program a success.

A student volunteers (with a parent’s consent) for a simple and private drug test and with a “drug free” result the student becomes an official member of the club. Youth are given full-color photo ID “Club Cards” and a certificate of acceptance. Club Cards can be shown at school and businesses for rewards throughout the community. The growing support of many businesses throughout the community offering discounts, free items, and positive support to our youth to remain drug free is a partnership that is invaluable to our youth and families in Belmont County.

Youth are tested randomly again throughout the school year and are given a voice to verbalize “I can’t, I might get tested”. Schools are never given the results of the tests. Parents will receive a phone call directly from the individual lab that analyzed the sample for any positive results that are confidential for the child and family. The lab will discuss the result and Club membership is placed on hold. The student is able to test once more during the same school year to regain membership. Parents periodically receive mailings providing information and support in promoting a drug free lifestyle for their children.

The program continues to grow and expand in Belmont County with the support of numerous businesses and donations from individuals. Currently, students are asked to pay a $20.00 fee to assist in the cost of the drug screens. Total costs annually per student are approximately $60.00 and donations are used solely to offset the costs of the drug screens on youth. Tax deductible donations to support Drug Free Clubs of America may be sent to “Friends of Drug Court, 114 South Butler Street, St. Clairsville, Ohio 43950.”

For more information on Drug Free Clubs of America click here.


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