A one-hour workshop is being offered by the Brattleboro Area Prevention Coalition throughout Windham County to educate and build opiate awareness amongst teenagers. The idea is to equip teen influencers with credible information about prescription drug abuse and effective strategies to take in order to help prevent it. Teen influencers are those people in the community that teens look up to. Some examples of influencers are parents, grandparents, coaches, teachers, and community healthcare providers.
The workshop is titled “Maximizing Your Role as a Teen Influencer: What You Can Do to Help Prevent Teen Prescription Drug Abuse.” People trained in the area of teen prescription drug abuse will be facilitating the workshops which are available in workplaces, homes and community spaces throughout Windham County.
If you believe that teens look up to you and consider you a mentor, you can make a big difference in your community by holding one of these workshops. The workshops provide a comfortable space for sharing experiences and peer support. The knowledge the teens develop is designed to help them increase their confidence and comfort in situations that may lead to prescription drug abuse. The workshop will empower teens to avoid the dreadful life of prescription drug abuse and will certainly save many lives in the process. The curriculum was created by the National Council on Patient Information and Education and the project is funded through Vermont Children's Trust Foundation.
Prescription drug abuse is not a popular topic when drug education is taught by parents. According to the Medicine Abuse Project, only 14 percent of teens say that their parents talked to them about prescription drugs in their conversations about substance abuse. The countrywide project provides a greater likelihood of more than one mentor relaying a consistent message to teens. With education being taught about opiate statistics, the county is hoping to reduce opiate abuse.
Education on the dangers of prescription drug abuse and how it negatively affects lives is a powerful tool in persuading teens away from experimenting. Peer pressure is a strong motivation for teens to try drugs. Eduction from people they know and trust can be a big persuader to keep them from using. Expect to see more county governments creating workshops like Brattleboro's to help reduce the abuse.