WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen (both D-Md.) today announced that Frostburg State University has been awarded a $37,203 AmeriCorps Grant from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) to fund the Conquering Opiate Abuse Together (COAT) program to help combat the opioid epidemic in Western Maryland.
“This grant represents a federal investment in our fight to combat the ongoing opioid crisis, which continues to impact families in every corner of Maryland. We must meet that head-on with more treatment programs and outreach efforts to affected communities,” said Senator Ben Cardin.
“We must use every tool at our disposal to fight the opioid epidemic that is devastating so many communities in our state. This funding will expand education and prevention programs, and help stop addiction before it starts. It is part of the great work AmeriCorps does in Maryland and across the country, and together we will work to tackle this crisis and save lives,” said Senator Van Hollen.
The COAT program will use AmeriCorps members to educate 450 community members on drug abuse resources and treatment programs via open community forums, one-on-one meetings, hotlines, and other outreach strategies. Nine AmeriCorps members will serve in the four westernmost counties of Western Maryland: Allegany, Garrett, Washington, and Frederick.
AmeriCorps, which is administered by CNCS, engages approximately 85,000 individuals each year in intensive, results-driven service at more than 21,000 locations across the country. In addition to the grant funding awarded, individual AmeriCorps members who complete at least 1,700 hours of service will earn a $5,815 Segal AmeriCorps Education Award to help pay for college or pay back student loans. Since 1994, more than 1 million AmeriCorps members have given more than 1 billion service hours in their communities and earned more than $3.3 billion in education awards. Interested individuals can learn about available opportunity and apply online by visiting AmeriCorps.gov.