Hello, everyone. With the constant barrage of information about everything that kids these days do wrong, it's refreshing to hear about students that go out of their way to make a difference in their school and their community.
Mary Burkins, with the Substance Awareness Center of Indian River County, let me know recently of the work the students in the county are doing to stay alcohol- and substance-free.
Her research indicated that prom, graduation and the long summer days were the peak times for high-risk behavior for students to celebrate and experiment with drugs.
But there are groups of students working hard to educate others against that specific kind of behavior.
Over at Sebastian High School, for example, the students held a door decorating contest just before prom, with the theme "Above the Influence." Classroom after classroom proudly displayed all the different ways the students strive to have fun while living substance-free.
Over at Gifford Middle School, the students held a poster rally not once, but every morning for a week, so students and parents could see their drug-free messages as they entered the school.
All the high schools are currently in the process to ask the upper-level students to sign a pledge care stating their intention to stay substance-free, and at the same time, many parents are being asked to sing a pledge to hold only substance-free parties for their children.
The students' resolve to stay "Above the Influence" is both refreshing and a great example to younger classmates.
To have the parents help them support that message only reinforces the strong commitment to families and the community that I see here every day.
And that's something we can all be proud of.
Dawn Krebs is the associate managing editor for Hometown News, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.