(New Philadelphia, Ohio) – Local high school students from Tuscarawas County Central Catholic attended a Tuscarawas County Commissioners meeting this week where a proclamation was issued recognizing National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week.
“Seeing our young people participating in the outreach efforts during National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week is refreshing,” explained Empower Tusc Coalition Coordinator Jodi Salvo. “Peer to peer encouragement to live healthy, drug-free lives is so powerful and we are so proud of these students for becoming leaders in their schools and their communities.”
The awareness campaign is recognized March 20th through March 26th and addresses the science of drug use and addiction among youth. The campaign is designed to bring the community together to enhance local prevention efforts through information, education, resources, and support.
The week-long health observance is organized by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), both part of the National Institutes of Health. NDAFW celebrates the inquisitive minds of teens by giving them a space (virtual or physical) to ask questions about drugs and alcohol and to get scientific answers from experts.
As part of the NDAFW celebration, Tuscarawas County Youth Groups are working on projects such as posting info graphs and posters around their school, creating a display case, creating a bulletin board display, morning announcements, writing facts on the white boards of each classroom, and hosting a spirit week. While drugs can put a teenager’s health and life in jeopardy, many teens are not aware of the risks. Even for those teens who do not abuse drugs, many have friends or family who do, and they are often looking for ways to help them.
In 2021, the Tuscarawas County Community Health Assessment results indicated that more than 8 percent of Tuscarawas County youth (grades 6-12) had drank at least one drink of alcohol in their life, increasing to 2 percent of youth seventeen and older; and that 16 percent of youth thought that there was no risk in using marijuana once or twice a week. There are so many myths about drugs and alcohol cluttering our popular culture. National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week® is for teens to get honest answers about drugs so they can make good, informed decisions for themselves and share accurate information with friends.”
For more information on local prevention efforts and resources visit empowertusc.com.