Swanton to celebrate Red Ribbon Week

Swanton Mayor Ann Roth and the Swanton Area Community Coalition are inviting the community to take a stand against substance use and abuse by celebrating Red Ribbon Week.

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 will kick off on Monday, Oct. 22 with the entire community wearing red.

Students in SEED are working hard to make a difference within the schools and community, while also educating their peers.

“We want the community to support our efforts,” said Xavier Williams, Swanton High School SEED member. Swanton SEED students challenge you to wear red on Monday. “Let’s show Swanton that we want a drug-free community now and in the future.”

To kick off of Red Ribbon Week on Oct. 22, students will inform their peers about the dangers of alcohol, marijuana, prescription drugs, and other substances by providing education. Students will have the opportunity to participate in fun, educational activities as the week goes on.

Throughout the week at Swanton Elementary School, Swanton Middle School and Swanton High School students will be promoting positive messages and education. Spirit Week themes throughout the school district include:

Monday: Put a stop to drugs. Wear Red!; Tuesday: I’m too bright for drugs (neon colors); Wednesday: Team up against drugs (Favorite sports jersey/clothing); Thursday: Don’t let drugs find you! (camouflage); Friday: Drugs? Not in my school! (School spirit wear).

“Red Ribbon Week encourages our entire community to adopt a healthy, drug-free lifestyle. The campaign brings together parents, schools, and businesses as we look for innovative ways to keep kids and communities drug free,” said Roth.

The red ribbon symbolizes a continuing commitment to reducing the demand for illicit drugs. 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, Cali., began wearing red ribbons to remember him and commemorate his sacrifice. Congress established Red Ribbon Week in 1988.

“Red Ribbon Week gives us the opportunity to be vocal and visible in our efforts to achieve a drug-free community,” said Roth. “Research shows that children are less likely to use alcohol and other drugs when parents and other role models are clear and consistent in their opposition to substance use and abuse.”

Community members can join Swanton’s youth by wearing red Monday and post it on social media for everyone to see that you support a drug-free community. Each person and/or business caught wearing red will get their picture taken, if desired, and put on all of Swanton Area Community Coalition’s social media platforms.

Visit GetSmartAboutDrugs.com or www.SwantonCoalition.org 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.