Playing it Safe on the Virtual Playground

Hudson Community Foundation Community Forum:
Playing It safe on the Virtual Playground
On October 25 Hudson Middle School students and their parents can hear Alison Feigh, program director at the Jacob Wetterling Resource Center, talk about how to play it safe online and in cyber space.
The daylong program, sponsored by the Hudson Community Foundation and the Hudson Middle School, will include a presentation by Feigh to all middle school students during the day and an evening presentation by her to parents and their students and the public.
Feigh’s presentation to the students is entitled “Protecting Your Online Footprint.” She will talk about making healthy choices online and about the dangers found there. The idea is to alert them to risky behaviors including sexting and cyberbullying and warning flags they should be aware of.
Feigh says, “This training is designed to empower adolescents and give them tools to make healthy decision as they gain independence.”
The evening session which is free and open to the public is entitled
“Navigating the Virtual Playground:
Healthy Choices and Worrisome Pitfalls for Today’s Youth.”
The program is not just for parents but also grandparents and caregivers.
Feigh encourages parents to bring their students with them to get the message together

Hudson Healing Together, A vigil to remember those lost to heroin

Hudson Healing Together


May 15 in Lakefront Park beginning at 7 p.m. and ending shortly after 8 p.m.

The Hudson Community Foundation will hold Hudson Healing Together, a vigil to remember those lost to heroin and other drugs on Thursday, May 15 at the Lakefront Park bandshell beginning at 7 p.m.

Sharing Hope and Healing
With more than a dozen Hudson area deaths including at least six Hudson High School graduates over the past several years, this event will share remarks from friends and family of some of those who have died, a prayer of remembrance by retired pastor Dr. Dan Bruch, and music by August Blues. If you wish to send a memory for the presentation, email

Healing Quilt
Blank quilt squares will be provided for anyone who wishes to be part of a community quilt in memory of those who have died, those who have survived addiction or to promote drug abuse education and prevention. The quilt project will continue throughout the year in sewing and then displaying around our community. The quilt squares will be provided with a transfer sheet and instructions.

Light of Hope
There will also be a candlelighting ceremony to remember all those whose lives have been lost. Candles will be supplied at Lakefront Park to those in attendance. We welcome anyone in the community both business and residence to light a candle that evening to remember those we have lost and symbolize our community standing together in support.

More information
Area organizations that provide resources for drug education and prevention will also be on hand. In the event of inclement weather, the vigil will be held at First Baptist Church at the corner of Vine and Third streets. The event is open to the public. Those attending should bring chairs or blankets for seating.

For more information contact Tricia Christiansen of Christiansen Creative, president of the Hudson Community Foundation at or Meg Heaton, Hudson Star-Observer and foundation board member, at

Heroin Awareness Piece Mailed to Hudson Familes

As a follow up to our community forum on Heroin in Hudson this past summer, the Hudson Community Foundation took a few more steps. The first was to open a fund specifically for Heroin Awareness and Prevention that allowed community members to donate towards an ongoing effort.

Several families impacted by heroin donated their time to our first fundraising effort during Pepperfest. These dollars, in addition to some personal contributions, allowed us to close the gap in some community awareness.

Through some conversations with key organizations, we learned that students do receive and will receive more info on the dangers of substance abuse. The gap Hudson Community Foundation saw was the parents of kids as young as middle school, all the way through the age of 18, not realizing how close this issue could be to their own kids. The pdf below is the mailer we sent out to every family that was within that category.

The piece is introduced with a letter signed by several Hudson families whose lives have been touched by the nightmare of heroin. The piece lists signs to look for, what could lead to a heroin addiction, and some resources for more information.

More than anything, Hudson Community Foundation wants families to have information if they see someone in need — and potentially share this information with their entire family.


Suicide Prevention Forum scheduled for Aug. 7th

The community is invited to our “QPR: Ask a question, save a life” suicide prevention forum on Aug. 7 at First Presbyterian Church, 1901 Vine Street, Hudson, at 6:30 p.m.

At least a dozen suicides have occurred in the Hudson area in recent years, including three Hudson area teens in the past year.  Through this public forum, the Hudson Community Foundation hopes to raise awareness about suicide, train interested person on prevention skills, and prevent more deaths.

The featured speaker will be Melissa Costello, who lost her daughter Jordan to suicide in September 2012. She has chosen to honor her daughter’s memory by speaking openly and candidly about Jordan’s death in hopes of saving lives and sparing other families the grief hers lives with daily.

Costello said the loss of her daughter is something she deals with every day and that will never change. But what she hopes will change is the circle of silence that surrounds suicide. “Suicide isn’t about shame or blame,” she said. “We need to be honest about it and love our kids enough to talk to them about it.”

In addition, local military veteran Willy Graves will discuss the increasing number of veterans who are dying of suicide each day and talk about ways to reach out to veterans who might need support. According to a report released in 2013 by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, 22 veterans committed suicide in the U.S. every day in 2010, with nearly 70 percent of all veteran suicides were among men and women aged 50 or older.

The Suicide Prevention Task Force of St. Croix County will conduct the three-step prevention training called QPR. The acronym QPR stands for “Question, Persuade and Refer” and was developed by Paul Quinnett, Ph.D., who designed the training to be an easy, memorable way for people to help someone who might be considering suicide. QPR is a nationally recognized, evidenced-based program, proven to reduce suicides in communities across the United States. It involves three steps:

  • Ask the person if he or she is thinking about suicide.
  • Persuade the person to get help.
  • Refer the person to an appropriate resource.

Everyone who completes the training at the forum will be given a QPR guide and information about suicide prevention and resources. Similar trainings are being conducted throughout the county.

For more information on the forum contact HCF board member Meg Heaton at (715) 426-1067.  For more information about the task force contact Patty Schachtner at or Kesha Marson at

Did you miss the Heroin Community Forum?

If you missed the forum on Heroin in Hudson, you can watch it online thanks to the River Channel by clicking here.

The speakers for the evening were overwhelmed and touched by the number of people who attended the forum. With a packed house, the audience listened to personal stories, area professionals and connected with other in the community.

We have had some requests for the program we handed out for the evening. In this program was a list of resources, and some of the stories captured from our area families. You can download a copy of this program by clicking here.

Some additional resources provided to us include:

Programs for Change Guide to Mental Health Services

Thanks to Sara Sedahl, an AODA Counselor with St. Croix County Health & Human Services we can also share this information:

BEHAVIORAL HEALTH Our vision is improved quality of life for the community of St. Croix County by providing high quality services directed at effectively meeting the behavioral health needs of its members.

Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Services
For Intake Appointments: 715-246-8255
For general information: 715-246‑8209                                                                                                                               


Assessment and Referral Services: Chemical dependency assessment services to determine the level of treatment need for individuals with chemical dependency issues.  Referral outpatient treatment or can help make arrangements for detox, inpatient treatment and halfway house services via our contracted provider network.

Outpatient Treatment Program: Primary and aftercare treatment in individual and/or group sessions. Our primary group meets twice per week and our aftercare group meets once per week.

Intensive Outpatient Treatment Program: Our Intensive Outpatient Program utilizes the Matrix Model consisting of group treatment sessions three days per week along with individual sessions, as needed.

Adolescent Treatment Services: Adolescent treatment is available through individual and group treatment formats.  Out adolescent group treatment program is a 90-day program involving one group for the adolescents and one group for the family on a weekly basis, as well as, individual sessions with the adolescent.

Jail Treatment Program: Chemical dependency treatment, utilizing the Matrix Model, provided to St Croix County jail inmates and Huber inmates on a voluntary or court ordered basis.

Case Management Services: Coordination of inpatient chemical dependency treatment with other support services offered by our agency to ensure clients receive high quality services and maximize their chances for a successful recovery.

Intoxicated Driver Program: Intoxicated Driver assessments for St. Croix County residents convicted of Operating While Intoxicated or related offenses resulting in a Driver Safety Plan. Driver Safety Plan recommendations range from educational programs to inpatient treatment.

Crisis Intervention Services:

  1. Emergency Services available via phone.  Emergency services may be accessed by dialing 911 and asking for the Behavioral Health On-call worker.
  2. Emergency inpatient treatment assessments are available on a daily basis for those who do not have insurance, Medicare or Medicaid.

Eligibility: These services are available for all residents of St. Croix County.

Payment Source: Medicaid, Medicare, private insurance, private pay on sliding fee scale.


PREVENTION  Resources for the prevention, treatment and intervention of substance use. Great information about preventing substance abuse at any age, from preschoolers to young adults.  Information and social networking for the parents of tweens and teens to help deal with the challenges that life with an adolescent can bring.  Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration with great educational resources and information on the substance abuse prevention campaign Talk. They Hear You.


Youth Service Bureau-Chemical Awareness Program
Stillwater: 651-439-8800
Woodbury: 651-735-9534
Cottage Grove: 651-458-5224
Western Wisconsin: 715-781-0409

St. Croix Valley Restorative Justice Programs
215 N. 2nd St., Suite 108, River Falls, WI  54022
Phone: 715-425-1100  |

1019 South Knowles Avenue, New Richmond, WI  54017
Phone: 715-246-6561


Many health insurance plans cover substance abuse treatment services. Contact your insurance provider to see what benefits your household can take advantage of.

 Many companies offer Employee Assistance Programs (EPA) that will provide free and confidential counseling for substance abuse issues for the employee and their family. Check with your Human Resource department or employee handbook for more information.

St. Croix County Health and Human Services
1445 N. 4th St., New Richmond, WI  54017  |  AODA Department: (715)246-8209

SAMHSA: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Online Treatment Locator tool and Information on Substance Abuse  |  1-800-662-HELP (4357)

Heroin in Hudson Agenda for July 18, 6:30pm


Heroin in Hudson: a Community Crisis
Thursday, July 18, 6:30 pm Run time about 2.5 hours
First Presbyterian Church, 1901 Vine Street, Hudson

Join us for a community forum with several speakers will share their perspective. Each speaker will talk from either their personal or professional experiences. We ask that the audience give each speaker about ten minutes to share their story and save question until the end. Our agenda and speaker line up for the evening is as follows:

  • Introduction
  • Nick Motu, Hazelden, Explanation of opiate based painkillers and how they lead to heroin
  • Phil Drewiske, Recovering addict, Personal story
  • Roger and Judy Drewiske, Parents story
  • Peter VanDusartz, Hudson Hospital Programs for Change, Physical and psychological effects of heroin addiction
  • Steven Skoog, Recovering addict, Personal story
  • Jodi and Phil Skoog, Parents story
  • Law enforcement HPD Det. Sgt. Geoff Willems; St. Croix County Investigator Jim Mikla
  • Karen Hale, mother of Alysa Ivy, A mother’s story
  • St. Croix County Coalition, Sara Seidel
  • Closing remarks and adjourn to question and answer period

Please watch for follow up information in the Hudson Star Observer about this critical community issue.

Now Accepting Grant Applications!

Spring is here and May 1, 2013 marks our spring deadline for local nonprofits to submit a grant request. Our board will meet in May and have final decisions by the end of the month. So if your group has a project or something you need help with, we have more information on our Grant Application page. Also note that we may like to brief hear presentations from the applicants!

HCF Grants $2,000 to Carpenter Nature Center Project in Hudson

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June 2012 – Hudson Star Observer

The Hudson Community Foundation gave $2,000 to the Carpenter St. Croix Valley Nature Center to enhance and develop trails at the 300-acre Hein Prairie and Wildlife Preserve on its Wisconsin campus, south of Hudson on County Road F and East Cove Road.

Enhancements will include a trail map and a brochure holder for the Greenwald Kiosk installed on site, and development of the trails for increased public use.

Pictured from left are Jim Freund, CSCVNC treasurer and board member, Jim Fitzpatrick, CSCVNC executive director and board member, Kim Burns, HCF board secretary, and Dick Whitcomb, HCF president.

Carpenter St. Croix Valley Nature Center provides environmental education, outdoor experiences and habitat conservation and serves 20,000-30,000 visitors annually, including 7,000 K-12 students.

HCF is committed to enriching the quality of life in the greater Hudson community through grants for social services, health, arts and humanities, education and environmental initiatives.

HCF Joins the Hudson Chamber

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June 18, 2012 – Hudson Star Observer
The Hudson Community Foundation was welcomed by the Hudson Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism Bureau with a ribbon cutting under the Hudson arch.

The Hudson Community Foundation is an organization committed to enriching the quality of life in the greater Hudson community. Since its founding nearly 15 years ago, HCF and its donor partners have given more than $1 million to local services and organizations.

At the event were, front from left, Chamber Ambassadors Pennie Peterson, Pete Keskey, Phaedra Raethke, from the Hudson Community Foundation Tricia Christensen, Dick Whitcomb and Maureen Wegleitner, Chamber President Kim Heinemann, Chamber Ambassador Dawn Marquart, from Hudson Community Foundation David Robson and Chamber Ambassador Traci Leffner; back, from Hudson Community Foundation Ryan Cari, Al Kiecker, John Malmberg, Meg Heaton, John Schommer and Barry Lundeen.

A Decade of Serving Hudson


HCF has grown to just over $1 million in assets over the last decade. It is made up of more than 20 individual donor foundations and a general foundation. Since making its first donation in 2000 to the Hudson High School All-Night Graduation Party, now an annual donation, the HCF has awarded grants totaling more than $115,000 throughout the community while providing donors a variety of options in which to give back to the community.

“We all could see the good the various foundations like Andersen’s and the Phipps can accomplish, but there is a limit to what they can do. We saw the Hudson Community Foundation as a way to give local people a chance to give back to Hudson by helping those who help the community,” said retired First National Bank President Ken Heiser, who served as HCF’s first president.

The foundation got started with a grant from the Bremer Foundation that would give the HCF $20,000 if it raised $10,000. First National Bank donated $10,000 and Heiser, along with others including past presidents Sam Cari and Susie Gilbert, raised the matching funds and then some to create HCF.

“With the foundation, everybody can be a philanthropist. You don’t need to have $50,000 or $100,000 to begin making a difference, and you don’t have to worry about all the paperwork and management of it. You can start with something far less and build it over time. And it allows for generations of a family to get directly involved in a legacy of giving,” said Heiser.

Gilbert says Hudson is lucky to have so many non-profit groups that improve the quality of life for everyone in the community. “It is wonderful to be able to be a resource for these organizations even if our donations aren’t as large as we would like, but I believe they make a difference. And over the next 20 to 30 years, I hope we will be able to make much more of an impact as the foundation grows.”

Current Board President, Jay Griggs believes that as more and more Hudson families become familiar with the HCF, they will want to be part of it. “Our dream is to surpass $20 million in the foundation so we can give out $1 million in grants each year to benefit the community. It took us 10 years to get to the first million, but from here on I expect the rate of growth will increase as more local citizens find out how we can help them create a legacy and make a difference by giving something back to their community.”