County of Marin - News Releases - Let's Talk

For Immediate Release
August 28, 2023

‘Let’s Talk’ a Valuable Toolkit for Middle and High School Families

Marin program helps families navigate mental health, substance use and other important topics difficult conversations with youth and teenagers

Marin County, CA – Parents: you’ve got mail. The fourth annual issue of the Let’s Talk and Let’s Start Talking booklets have been sent to 5,000 Marin County families of local public and private schools. Available in English and Spanish, Let’s Talk was mailed to all incoming 9th grade families and Let’s Start Talking is mailed to all 6th grade families. These resources foster open communication between parents and teens on challenging subjects like peer pressure, underage substance use, and mental health, while also educating parents about practicing positive communication, active listening, and connection as their children navigate adolescence. Each issue incorporates feedback and perspectives from local parents and teens, providing tools for positive, meaningful and engaging conversations.

Let’s Talk is developed by Marin Healthy Youth Partnerships (MHYP), in partnership with Marin Health and Human Services (HHS), Marin County Office of Education (MCOE), OD Free Marin, and the Marin Prevention Network (MPN).

Key highlights of the Let’s Talk booklets include:

  1. Evidence-based information: gain access to accurate and up-to-date information about various substances, their potential risks, and the importance of prevention.
  2. Recognizing warning signs: learn how to recognize early signs of substance use and behavioral changes in children. Timely identification allows parents to intervene and seek appropriate support before the situation escalates.
  3. Healthy coping mechanisms: discover practical steps for teaching youth healthy coping mechanism and life skills to navigate challenges and stressors without turning to substance.
  4. Community resources: explore a list of local and national resources to further enhance a parent’s ability to prevent substance use and seek help if needed.

"Let's Talk isn't just a booklet; it's a bridge that connects the hearts and minds of parents and teenagers,” said Kathy Koblick, Marin HHS’s Public Health Division Director. “This essential toolkit empowers families with proven tips and guidance to discuss difficult topics facing today’s youth, while fostering understanding, compassion, and mutual growth – one conversation at a time."

Parents are encouraged to read and keep the book on hand throughout their student’s 6th - 12th grades. Much of the information is timeless and provides good reminders about the social and emotional growth that comes with adolescence.

The Let’s Talk program includes four community discussions throughout the school year that are led by experts and local students with live Spanish translation conducted via Zoom. The first will be held on October 4th and the discussion will include what to know about today's current drug trends including the rise of Delta THC, psychedelics, and fentanyl.

Future discussions will cover the adolescent brain, parenting to support our teens, and mental health in relation to underage substance use. All previous discussions and digital copies of Let’s Talk are available at For more information, please email


Kathy Koblick
Public Health Division Director
Health and Human Services

20 N. San Pedro Drive
San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 473-2979
Email: Kathy Koblick
Marin HHS website