Community need has prompted the Eagle County Sheriff's Office to present a free substance abuse prevention workshop from NotMYkid. The workshop will take place today, Jan. 17, at Homestake Peak School, located at 750 Eagle Road., Eagle-Vail. The presentation begins at 6 p.m.
Workshop attendees will learn about drug issues, trends, terminology, see photos of paraphernalia and be given tips for talking to their kids about drugs and establishing a proactive drug prevention plan for their families.
A limited number of First Check in-home drug test kits will be available for families to take with them. The kits check for seven illicit and five prescription drugs. Quite often just having the kit in the home is enough of a deterrent for middle school students.
Kids are susceptible to peer pressure and drug experimentation during the transition years, fifth through ninth grades and into high school. The average age for first-time drug use is 13 years old, which is why the Eagle County Sheriff's Office and NotMYkid believe it so important to educate parents before their kids are teens.
Parents need to understand what their kids face every day, in order to protect them. Teens ages 12-17 say that prescription drugs are easier to get than beer. Of those who use or abuse prescription drugs, 65 percent are getting them from home or a friend's house. Additionally, 50 percent of teens who come home after 10 p.m. on school nights report marijuana or other drug use occurring, according to the 2008 Center for Addiction and Substance Abuse report (CASA).
"The NotMYkid program is unique because it encourages proactive, two-way communications between parent and child to prevent drug use before it happens," said Julie Shockley, Manager of Adult Educational Services for NotMYkid. "We provide resources so parents can develop a substance abuse prevention plan that works for their family, and offer home drug test kits which offer kids an easy way to say no to peer pressure."
NotMYkid was founded in 2000 and is dedicated to helping parents, teens, educators and communities with adolescent behavioral health issues.
All area parents are invited to attend this program but please note it is not open to students.