Swanton schools participating in Red Ribbon Week

Mayor Ann Roth is inviting the community to take a stand against substance use by celebrating Red Ribbon Week from Oct. 21-25. Red Ribbon Week raises awareness of drug use and the drug related problems facing the community, and encourages parents, educators, business owners, and other community organizations to promote drug-free lifestyles.

This year’s celebration kicked off Monday with the hopes that the entire community will take a visible stand against drugs and wear red. Students Encouraging Educated Decisions (SEED-SACC’s Youth Group) students are working hard to make a difference within the schools and community and educating their peers on the importance of a drug-free life.

To kick off of Red Ribbon Week all Swanton Local School District students will be educated about the dangers of alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, and prescription drugs throughout the week and the importance of a healthy lifestyle. Educational activities are scheduled throughout the week and include a theme week full of positive messages.

Themes for the week include: “Red”y to Live a Drug Free Life (Red) on Monday, I’m Too Bright for Drugs (Neon colors) Tuesday, Take Pride in Being Drug Free (Patriotic clothing) on Wednesday, You Can, I Can ‘Sock Out’ Drugs (Bring can good-philanthropy & wear crazy socks) on Thursday, and Our School Chooses to be Drug Free (School spirit wear) on Friday.

This year, multiple community entities are choosing to support Red Ribbon Week. The Swanton Public Library will be hosting a coloring contest for all elementary students. The Swanton Police Department is going to be in the schools providing education along with SACC. Swanton Kroger will be handing out Red Ribbon Week stickers to all children and wearing red pins in support. The school district is hosting activities every day to build awareness and provide education for K-12 students. Finally, the Village of Swanton is supporting the week by having red ribbons tied to trees and signs throughout the community.

The red ribbon symbolizes a continuing commitment to reducing the demand for illicit drugs in our communities. In 1985, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Special Agent Enrique S. “Kiki” Camarena was killed by drug traffickers. Shortly after Camarena’s death, citizens from his hometown of Calexico, California, began wearing red ribbons to remember him and commemorate his sacrifice.

Congress established Red Ribbon Week in 1988. Visit GetSmartAboutDrugs.com for more information about Red Ribbon Week or contact Andrea Smith, Swanton Area Community Coalition’s Executive Director at 419-826-1222 or SwantonCoalition@gmail.com.