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Two Louisville Programs Serving At Risk Youth Get $1.2 Million

Over the next five years, the Seventh Street Corridor PAL Coalition and Louisville Alliance for Youth will each get $625,000 to help reduce substance abuse among the area's youth.U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth, who helped secure the funding, said the two groups would not have received the money if they didn’t have a proven record of success.“What they’ve done is basically shown kids other ways to have fun and to occupy their time that drives them away from drugs or alcohol or tobacco," he told WFPL on Tuesday. Related: At Risk: Louisville's Daunting Education ChallengeThe partnerships the two groups have been able to create have helped to show kids alternatives to substance abuse, said Yarmuth, a Democrat who represents Louisville. The programs include having the youth complete projects, do community service and participate in mentorships.“That’s a wonderful approach to showing people that there’s a better way to enjoy life and to have a fulfilling life than to turn to substance abuse," he said.Around 90 percent of adults with addiction report they began using before age 18, according to the Partnership for Drug Free Schools.The Louisville Alliance for Youth works on prevention efforts in Southern Jefferson County. The PAL Coalition serves the Park Hill, Algonquin, and Old Louisville neighborhoods.