ICAN is a nonprofit organization located in the downtown Chandler Redevelopment Area, and was one of seven nonprofits recognized.
“It was unbelievable and amazing. We were nominated last year and excited, but to receive the award was completely unexpected and humbling and inspiring at the same time,” said Christy McClendon, chief executive officer of ICAN. “It is also important that the award was based on the youths’ work. To recognize them for their work was a great test on their futures.”
ICAN helps reduce underage drinking through its peer leaders, who range from 13 to 18 years old, and the Chandler Police Department , which uses shoulder tapping, signage compliance checks, and town halls to inform the community about the dangers of underage drinking.
“The average age for youth in the Chandler Redevelopment Area to take their first drink is 12.6 years old and over 80 percent of the 10th graders identify with using alcohol in the last 30 days, so it’s a significant issue for the area,” said McClendon. “We brought together a group of kids about three years ago and asked them what we should do with the issue and those kids…founded a coalition on substance abuse which takes on the issue of underage drinking.”
ICAN will also be a top five finalist for the 2010 Non-Profit of the Year Award.
On June 30th, Eight, Arizona PBS will feature ICAN and other award winners on a half-hour primetime television special, “Be More Inspired.” To learn more about becoming involved in ICAN’s work to reduce underage drinking in the Chandler Redevelopment Area, contact ICAN at 480-821-4207.