GRAND CHUTE, Wis. (WFRV) — At Fox Valley Technical College, a mobile application for the National Alliance for Drug Endangered Children has been in the works for a while now.

“This is really the beginning of an exciting process in the app development,” Scott Henderson, Executive Director of National DEC said.

The app is aimed at providing resources to children and families impacted by drug and alcohol abuse.

“Our goal is to form these multi-disciplinary alliances where a lot of different professionals within the community are able to provide early recognition, early intervention, services, and response to the children and the families to break the cycle of misuse and addiction,” Henderson explained.

The group received a grant to create the app, and turned to FVTC to make it a reality.

“My team, the Learning Innovations Team at the college,” Jay Stulo, director of Learning Innovations at FVTC said, “is a team that has mobile app developers, software engineers, and graphic artists and media artists.”

They’re helping to create the app, which will use geotagging technology to connect struggling families across the country with resources to improve their situations.

“It’s a great partnership,” Henderson said, “where we have the concept and the connection to the services, and they have the technical expertise.”

There’s something else Fox Valley Tech has to offer: a movie set.

“They’ve got the facilities here where we can film the videos that are going to connect families and share the story,” Henderson said.

The school’s Public Safety Training facilities were utilized Thursday as a set to film videos that will serve as content on the app.

“It makes a really good movie,” Stulo said.

The videos are meant to make connections with users of the app.

“The videos are going to tell that story, provide a point of connection, and hopefully provide hope to the folks that are in those situations,” Henderson explained.

Stulo says that in designing the app and watching the scenarios played out by actors, his team has realized just how important this new app will be.

“We just start to realize how widespread these issues can actually be,” he said.

They’re making connections, but also ready to get back to what they do best.

“It will be nice to get back to the business that we’re experts in, which is creating apps, but this has certainly been a fun activity to be a part of,” Stulo said.

Phase One of the app is expected to be completed by September 2021.

Phase Two will be rolled out in September 2022.