Be sober at prom, youth coalition encourages local students
It’s spring again, which means many teenagers are celebrating their last prom before graduating high school and beginning a new chapter in their lives, and some are celebrating their first.
Students from Anderson County, Clinton, and Oak Ridge high schools are joining together to remind their peers to be sober this prom. These students form the Youth Ambassador Coalition, or YAC, according to a news release from ASAP of Anderson.
One of the ways they have worked together is by designing a poster to display and keycards to give out with the tagline, “One Decision Can Change Everything: Make this a night to remember, not a night you want to forget.”
During the months of April-June, typically prom season, 33% of alcohol-related traffic fatalities occur.
On prom night, students at Anderson County and Clinton high schools will have the opportunity to take pictures with their friends at a selfie booth. The hashtag #IAMONE will be displayed at the bottom of every photo, reminding them to make safe choices on prom night. Students attending the event will also receive an ASAP of Anderson keychain with a list of resources for help with alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs.
ASAP of Anderson would like to thank the Tennessee Highway Safety Office for providing a grant to support an I AM ONE selfie studio during Anderson County and Clinton proms.
Although encouragement from peers and organizations is impactful, it can only go so far. In one survey, three out of four teens said their parents have the biggest influence on their decision to drink alcohol. Parents and caregivers can help keep promgoers safe during their celebrations by reminding their teens that they disapprove of any alcohol or drug use, knowing the itinerary and checking in, being clear that it is never OK to drive or ride in the car with someone who is under the influence, making sure their phone is charged in case they need to reach out, and being available and supportive if something happens and they need to reach out.
For parents or caregivers wondering how to talk with their teens about substances, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration has created the “Talk. They Hear You.” campaign. This campaign provides information to parents, caregivers, educators, and other adults on how to prevent underage drinking and other drug use among minors.
For more information about YAC, the #IAMONE campaign, or how to have these important conversations with your teens, contact ASAP of Anderson at 865-457-3007 or visit www.asapofanderson.org. Follow @ASAPofAnderson on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
This article originally appeared on Oakridger: Be sober at prom, youth coalition encourages local students