Our History.

Prevention First, initially named the Illinois Prevention Resource Center (PRC), was created in 1980 to address the alarming increase in youth drug use. In 1987, PRC became a nonprofit organization. In 1994, the organization became known as Prevention First.

We were born from a growing need in our state, and we have steadily added new and innovative programs over the last four decades to address the ever-changing needs of Illinois communities.

  • Trained thousands of schools and community groups in the use of effective substance use prevention programs and practices.
  • Opened the state’s first training and resource center to help schools establish effective Student Assistance Programs.
  • Expanded Illinois’ Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD).
  • Engaged new partners in the public and private sectors.
  • Began public-facing advocacy campaigns.
  • Ventured into new areas of prevention, including training healthcare professionals and women on the dangers of drinking alcohol during pregnancy.

Today, Prevention First is Illinois’ largest nonprofit resource center specializing in preventing alcohol and other drug use among youth and pregnant women.