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Your Voice Ohio is a collaborative effort to produce more relevant, powerful journalism based on the needs and ambitions of Ohioans and Ohio communities. Your Voice Ohio is an initiative of WYSO and more than 30 news organizations across Ohio.

New Grant To Help Children, Families Affected By Opioid Epidemic

Tony Capizzi

The Montgomery County Family Treatment Court, was recently awarded a three year grant that will be used to improve the safety and well-being of children caught up in the opioid epidemic.


To get the details on how the grant will help, WYSO's Jerry Kenney spoke with Juvenile Court Judge Tony Capizzi, who oversees the program.



Additional information from Montgomery County:

"The mission of Family Treatment Court is to ensure children are raised in a nurturing and healthy environment with parents who are drug free. Substance abuse, particularly heroin, is a significantly growing problem in Ohio. Between 2009 and 2013, Montgomery County saw a striking 132% increase in child welfare cases where opiates were noted as reason for action. The State of Ohio spends an estimated $45 million annually for placement costs of children due to parental use of drugs.


Nationally, reunification rates are approximately 20-40% higher for Family Treatment Courts than the comparison group, and treatment completion rates are 20-30% higher. In addition, children of Family Treatment Court participants spend less time in out-of-home placements, averaging fewer months in foster care. 


This grant funded project will be a collaborative partnership between Montgomery County Juvenile Court, Montgomery County Children Services, and Case Western Reserve University." 

Jerry Kenney was introduced to WYSO by a friend and within a year of first tuning in became an avid listener and supporter. He began volunteering at the station in 1991 and began hosting Alpha Rhythms in February of 1992. Jerry joined the WYSO staff in 2007 as a host of All Things Considered and soon transitioned into hosting Morning Edition. In addition to now hosting All Things Considered, Jerry is the host and producer of WYSO Weekend, WYSO's weekly news and arts magazine. He has also produced several radio dramas for WYSO in collaboration with local theater companies. Jerry has won several Ohio AP awards as well as an award from PRINDI for his work with the WYSO news department. Jerry says that the best part of his job is being able to talk to people in the community and share their experiences with WYSO listeners.