TRI-VILLAGE — Did you know that statistically, a MAJORITY of students abstain from drugs, alcohol, and tobacco and are paving the way to a bright future?
Students at Tri-Village involved in the We are the Majority Peer-Led Program recently met with Mayor Monyca Schlechty to sign a document to proclaim the week of March 30 as Majority Awareness Drug-Free Prevention Education Week. The teens would like their peers and the community to know that there are students concerned about drug prevention and mental health promotion. Leaders hope for proactive community support surrounding these particular topics. WATM students also would like to share with the public that a majority of teens say no to dangerous decisions and understand the harmful implications that arise from use.
A recent project held by the students was an assembly for 7th to 12th graders to encourage peers to take a stand against drugs, alcohol, and tobacco and also to make a commitment to being a positive role model for younger students in their school. Student leaders also have been working on tobacco/vaping education lessons for elementary students as well as have worked on preparing for a prevention education week to now be held at the beginning of the new school year.
When speaking with students from WATM, Lydia Ayette said, “I have been involved in WATM for the last two years. I really enjoy working with younger kids to help them make good choices. I especially enjoy doing this through events like Camp Majority, Majority Awareness Walk, and our Dodge the Dangerous Decision dodgeball assembly. WATM has also helped me develop leadership skills and has given me more confidence.”
Calvin Fritz added, “I feel it is important to be drug-free because when someone user drugs, it takes over their life and takes away opportunities. This affects people you meet, jobs, and even health and family. I am part of the Majority because I want to be a good role model for my little brothers and friends.”
Parents and community members can support students in efforts to share the dangers of drugs by modeling positive and responsible behaviors such as not drinking and driving, decreasing access to harmful substances including locking up items illegal for children, removing unused prescriptions from the medicine cabinet, and talking with children about the dangers of use.
“I’m very proud that students at Tri-Village are making an opportunity to encourage others to remain or become drug and/or alcohol free,” said Mayor Schlechty. “I commend them for their efforts.”
According to Prevention Action Alliance, the earlier the onset of use, the more likely one can become addicted. Students are also 50 percent less likely to abuse harmful substances if parents or caregivers express the importance of non-use in the home.
To learn more ways to talk with your child about drug prevention, check out www.starttalking.ohio.gov the site provides talking points for every age group and has a sign up for parent tips.
Please support our students’ mission during Majority Drug-Free Prevention and Education Awareness week and throughout the year!
For more information regarding the WATM Program in the schools, contact Kelly Harrison, Student Success Liaison, Recovery, and Wellness Centers of Midwest Ohio.