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Champions for a Drug Free Carroll County has a new coordinator.
Hayley Franklin was promoted from assistant to coordinator in late March after the previous coordinator, Misty Wheeler, was hired as the manager at General Butler State Resort Park.
Franklin’s involvement with the organization goes back several years. “I was actually a student rep for Champions in 2006,” she said. “I was the first student rep for Champions, and we still carry along that tradition today.”
She remained a student representative until 2008 when she graduated from Carroll County High School.
After high school, Franklin attended Northern Kentucky University. She graduated with a Bachelor’s in Communications in May 2012. Her minor, public relations, helped prepare her for the position as Assistant Coordinator of Champions in September 2012.
As Wheeler’s assistant, Franklin helped with many Champion events and did “a little bit of everything,” she said.
With Franklin assuming the post of coordinator, the assistant job is now vacant. The position has been posted by the Carroll County Board of Education, and Franklin expects that person to be on board in mid-April.
After Wheeler announced her plans to leave the position, Franklin assumed coordinator responsibilities until the job was filled. “When the position officially opened, I interviewed with the school board and got it,” she said.
Franklin said one of her main goals is to expand the coalition. Right now she has a few key members, but really wants more community involvement.
“Anyone who wants to help, can,” Franklin said. “I feel like more members need to get involved. I want to grow the coalition.”
She also would like to expand the task forces, including the school, faith based, media, business and law. “I want people to be involved,” she said.
As for the future, Franklin said she plans to “continue programs we [Champions] are doing because they are important.” Among those programs is the upcoming Child Abuse Event scheduled from 6-8:30 p.m. April 26 at the front entrance of General Butler State Resort Park. The event will include guest speakers, free food, inflatables, door prizes and free resources on child abuse and alcohol/substance abuse. “Pinwheels for Prevention” t-shirts are available for $10. Blue glow sticks will be available at the end of the event during a closing ceremony to spread awareness for and to honor those who have fallen victim to child abuse. The event is sponsored by Champions, Family Ties, 21st Century Lighthouse and Youth Services.
Franklin said she wants to continue other projects including the prom events, summer camps, Relatives Raising Relatives, and adult education programs, just to name a few.
Among the new responsibilities as coordinator, Franklin is responsible for grant writing for the organization.
“Champions was just awarded $2,800 to prevent underage drinking,” she said. This grant from NorthKey was the first grant Franklin wrote after assuming the coordinator position.
Franklin said her new position is exciting. “I love my job because it’s sort of like a mix of professions: PR, teacher, event planner” all in one.
Franklin’s vision for the future includes increasing community awareness.
“I want the community to know we are here to help,” she said. This could include education or even treatment referral to those in need of assistance. “We can help lead them in the right direction.”
If you would like to become a member of the Champions Coalition or volunteer at an event, you can call the Champions office at (502) 732-8304.