JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - "We can't stop here. Just because we are making progress, we can't stop. I think we need to continue," said Nancy Gribble.
She was among those who spoke at Monday night's second "Out of the Dark" forum, and opening up the lines of communication is something everyone is eager to do.
"We've been talking about it for years and years and years. It's wonderful that our community is now stepping up, and going to do something about it," said Sharon Travis.
She is just one resident who showed up Monday night.
She works as a social worker and says she feels there is a lot that can be learned from this mixture of people.
"We're just interested in substance abuse issues, alcohol, drug abuse, and helping folks that have those problems. We deal with that every day, and we'd like to be a part of this community effort," said Travis.
And community is the key word in this initiative because drugs affect everyone from the oldest to the youngest.
"You can find any drugs, anywhere in the schools. I mean, it's the cold, hard truth," said Jeremy White.
He made his first visit to Monday's forum and says as a teen, it is important to hear people talking about the issues in an educated way.
"They knew exactly what they were talking about. They knew exactly what the youth is dealing with. It wasn't just a bunch of people talking about something that wasn't going to get solved," said White.
And solving the problem of drug abuse is the whole reason this effort formed in the first place.
"We all share in the problem. We want a safe community. Jonesboro's a wonderful place and we want to keep it that way," said Gribble.
So with the help of a community at large, the efforts might just pay off in the long run.
"As soon as the meeting was over. I was eager to go over and sign up for anything to get involved to help with the community. Unless we help, nothing is going to be done," said White.
Also talked about at Monday's forum was the creation of a mental health court that mirrors the current drug court, but works more closely with those abusers who have mental health problems as well.
For more information: www.outofthedark.org