DARKE COUNTY — Drug, alcohol, and tobacco-free high schoolers in Darke County will have the chance to save some money on car insurance beginning April 2, as local nonprofit group We Are the Majority prepares to kick off a program they’ve designed in cooperation with American Family Insurance.
As part of the new initiative, called the Darke County Drug-Free Driver Discount Program, students between 16 and 18 years of age can volunteer to take a free drug screen at Recovery and Wellness Centers of Midwest Ohio. If they pass, they’ll be issued a card entitling them, among other perks, to a discounted rate at their local American Family office. The card lasts six months, and can be renewed periodically until its owner finishes high school.
We Are The Majority is an after-school leadership program open to high school and middle school students throughout the county, and focuses on young people encouraging their peers to live drug and alcohol-free. Kelly Harrison, who works as a prevention specialist at Darke County Recovery Services, started the local chapter of We Are the Majority in 2013. She originally had a group of only five teenagers to work with, but the group’s membership has since grown to well over 100. The program has also expanded into Greenville, Tri-Village, and Arcanum-Butler schools.
The driving focus of the program is to promote the fact that, despite the significance of the opioid crisis, the majority of students are not abusers of alcohol or drugs.
“We like to provide perks for prevention,” Harrison said of the Drug-Free Driver program. “We want students to know that this is an opportunity for them, if they are making positive decisions.”
Harrison got the idea for the program, she said, when she saw another parent posting on her Facebook page asking about affordable insurance options for new drivers.
“The students then met and discussed what would be an incentive to make kids want to be involved,” Harrison said.
In addition to the car insurance discount, the cards also come with a “goodie bag” containing a $10 gas card, gift cards for local businesses Sadie Grace and Dairy Barn, and a pop socket – a collapsible cell phone accessory that can alternately be used as either a grip or a stand for the students’ phones. Harrison is also working with local schools to see what perks they might be willing to offer their students who get the card.
The program will kick off at the group’s second annual Majority Awareness Walk in downtown Greenville Monday, April 2. Students will gather at the Annie Oakley statue at the end of South Broadway St. at 10 a.m., and then walk from there to the city building. Tables with information and other resources will be set up by the statue before the walk, including a table dedicated to the Drug-Free Drivers program.
Students and parents interested in the program may contact Darke County We Are the Majority, Kelly Harrison at Recovery and Wellness Centers of Midwest Ohio, or Shawna Brewer at American Family Insurance.
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