By DAVID DEATON
Did you know that 47 percent of all eighth grade students nationwide have tried alcohol? That is almost half and that percentage is way too high. Think about it, about half of all 12-and 13-year old boys and girls in the nation have tasted alcohol.
Where is the innocence?
Did you know that 21 percent of eighth graders nationwide have tried smoking within the last 30 days? Yet, as a nation, when it comes to children we put our focus on obesity.
Well, the Boys and Girls Club of LeFlore County knows the importance of educating kids about drugs and the importance of having a fun-filled afternoon. Bringing them together can be a challenge
But, through Smart Moves, a Boys and Girls Club of America Program offered to all clubs, the challenge gets a little bit easier.
Smart Moves, which stands for Skills Mastery and Resistance Training, is a prevention education program that addresses problems such as drug and alcohol use and premature sexual activity.
The program uses fun interactive games and helps kids to do more than simply emphasizing a “Say No” message.
The program teaches young people ages 6 to 15 how to say no by involving them in discussion and role-playing, practicing resistance and refusal skills, developing assertiveness, strengthening decision-making skills and analyzing media and peer influence. The ultimate goal is to drop that 48 percent national rate, stand up to peer pressure and make a “Smart move.”
The program also helps kids to make “Smart Moves” about personal hygiene, proper eating habits and have good dental health.
Parents as well as members of the community can also get involved by making “Smart Moves” in the decisions we make every day, after all kids do learn by example.
Poteau, Heavener and Shady Point offer the program to students and through our efforts we hope to bring down the drug use percentage and want all kids as well as parents to make a “Smart Move.”
If you would like to volunteer some time to helping kids make a “Smart Move” or to find out more about the program contact the BGCLC office at (918) 647-7136.
Be sure to check us out on facebook and our website at www.thebgclc.org.