YLC joins teens across the U.S. in week-long effort to SHATTER THE MYTHS ®
on drugs and alcohol
Teenagers from the Van Buren County Youth Leadership Council have joined forces with other teens and scientists across the United States as part of “National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week®” (NDAFW). The week-long health observance, 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, takes place Monday, January 22 through Sunday, January 28. 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, the YLC students are promoting the NDAFW IQ Challenge and will participate in some educational activities during their meetings.
More than half of high school seniors across the country report using alcohol, and about 14.3 percent report using an illegal drug sometime in the past year. 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.
On the 2016 Iowa Youth Survey youth in Van Buren County reported the following facts on substance abuse in Van Buren County:
· 17% of 11th Graders reported having 5 or more drinks of alcohol in a row on at least one day in the past 30 days.
· 27% of 11th graders reported having had at least one drink of alcohol in the past 30 days.
· 45% of 6th, 8th, and 11th graders reported that it is easy or very easy for kids under 21 to get alcoholic beverages in their community. The 11th grade students had 83% report it is easy or very easy for kids under 21 to get alcoholic beverages in their community.
· 11th graders reported that during the past year they got alcohol from the following sources: 3% Bought it, 7% Gave someone money to buy it, 18% Got it at a party, 13% A friend who is under 21 gave it to them, 10% A friend who is over 21 gave it to them, and 10% Got it from a parent
· 40% of 6th, 8th, and 11th graders reported that it is easy or very easy for kids under 18 to get cigarettes in their community.
· 27% of 6th, 8th, and 11th graders reported that it is easy or very easy for a kid their age to get marijuana in their community.
We want teens to have the opportunity to learn what science has taught us about drug abuse, alcohol, and addiction. 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 ND&AFW, YLC or the SAFE Coalition please contact the coalition staff members at 319-293-3334 ext. 1017 or firstname.lastname@example.org or check out the coalition website www.vbsafecoalition.com, the coalition blog https://vbsafecoalition.blogspot.com/, or on Facebook at Van Buren County SAFE Coalition or Van Buren County Youth Leadership Council.