Lifelong Resilience

Did You Know?

-90% of people with a substance use disorder began using substances before the age of 18.

-Studies have shown that the highest incidence of first-use of alcohol and other drugs occurs during middle school.

-LGBTQ+ teens who are highly rejected by their families are more than 8 times as likely to have attempted suicide, nearly 6 times as likely to report high levels of depression, more than 3 times as likely to use illegal drugs, and more than 3 times as likely to be at high risk for HIV and sexually transmitted diseases, than LGBTQ+ youth who experience little or no rejection from parents or caregivers.

The CHD Difference

Before this program I was insecure about who I was and was scared to be who I truly am around others. Thanks to my advisor, and the help of my peers, I was able to overcome my obstacles and I am now free to express myself and be the person I always wanted to be. 

-Pittsburg High School Empowerment Program participant

How does CHD Address Lifelong Resilience?

CHD provides opportunities for youth to obtain services that aim to reduce risk factors, while working to enhance their protective factors. Staff deliver programs to participants that provide concrete support and social connections. Youth program participants are consistently inspired to strive for healthy decision-making and obtaining resources when needed.


  • A community based, prevention focused support program for LGBTQ+ youth, and their straight allies, ages 12-20 in East Contra Costa County.
  • Groups that offer youth social-emotional support and psycho-social education related to LGBTQ+ identity, family and relationships, health and wellness, skills development, and community engagement.
  • Provide individual assessments, check-ins, and referrals to additional culturally appropriate support service, as needs are identified.
  • LGBTQ+ youth can be themselves, get social support, build self-esteem and develop the resilience to be thriving citizens.
  • Group members also learn leadership and coping skills to help them flourish in their schools and communities.
  • Activities include educational workshops, discussions of current events, and getting involved in efforts to address bullying and discrimination in schools.
  • The program currently offers weekly support groups virtually, and in person at Deer Valley High School, Pittsburg High School, and Hillview Junior High.


  • Serves middle schools in East, Central, and West Contra Costa County.
  • Youth participate in Prevention Education Groups and Brief Intervention, both utilizing evidence-based curriculums.
  • Prevention Education Groups focus on the following topics:
    • Self-Awareness and Getting Support
    • Teen Brain Development and the Harms of Alcohol and Other drugs (AOD)
    • Conflict Resolution and Substance Abuse in the Family
    • Healthy Coping Skills for Stress and Peer Pressure Refusal Skills
  • Brief Intervention services offered to students experimenting with AOD use, utilizing Motivational Interviewing techniques to encourage decreased use.
  • Through participation in the program youth have shown a greater understanding and a changed attitude towards the harmful consequences of teen substance use.
  • Youth participants show improvement in peer relations, increased interest in school activities and academics, and a decrease in engagement in harmful behaviors. 

Contacts & Locations


    • Antioch Middle School
    • Black Diamond Middle School
    • Crespi Middle School
    • DeJean Middle School
    • El Dorado Middle School
    • Helms Middle School
    • Hillview Junior High School
    • Martin Luther King, Jr. Junior High School
    • Oak Grove Middle School
    • Pinole Middle School
    • Riverview Middle School
    • Valley View Middle School


    • Deer Valley High School
    • Hillview Junior High School
    • Pittsburg High School
    • Rivertown Resource Center