Our Choices program is provided in area middle schools to reduce alcohol use by students.

Studies have shown that early intervention in middle school age children greatly reduces the risk of harmful drinking in high school and later in life.

School staff help identify students who have a need for intervention and their parents agree for them to participate.  We educate and guide these youth towards healthier choices and improved functioning at home and school. Choices also provides education and resources for the parents, and if needed, referrals for treatment.

Parents learn how to communicate with their kids on the topics of alcohol and promoting abstinence. This effort serves to increase the ability of parents and families to effectively intervene in their youth’s alcohol use by providing them with needed information, skills, referrals, and personal support.

2016 Service Results


94% of students reported a decrease in alcohol use.

95% of parents increased their knowledge about adolescent alcohol and drug use.

92% of students demonstrated improved school attendance.

92% of parents reported an increase in overall family functioning.

94% of parents improved their ability to access resources.

Services Offered

An interactive and educational group approach is used. Weekly groups meet over a 10 week period to:

Promote abstinence from alcohol and provide information about the consequences of using alcohol and how alcohol affects the body.

Give students an opportunity to identify benefits of being alcohol-free and develop personal reasons not to use alcohol.

Encourage communication with parents and family.

Encourage students to make healthy lifestyle decisions.

Activity examples include:

Game shows.

Mocking-up a “brain” to indicate positive brain growth versus negative.

Knowledge about the brain and how it works.

How the brain is impacted by trauma, alcohol, and drug use.


Students of any participating area middle school.


Services are free of charge and provided regardless of religion, race, ethnic background, and socio-economic status. Funded by Dane County Department of Human Services.


Tricia Norby, LPC, MS, MA
Choices Coordinator

Catholic Charities
702 S. High Point Road, Ste. 105
Madison, WI 53719
Phone: (608) 628-7147
Office Phone: (608) 826-8010
Fax: (608) 826-8027

Emily Jaime, MA, LMFT
Program Manager

Catholic Charities
702 S. High Point Road, Ste. 105
Madison, WI 53719
Phone: (608) 826-8010
Toll Free: (800) 236-4673
Fax: (608) 826-8027