Red Ribbon Week


The Peer Outreach team behind Red Ribbon Week at GHS

Lexi Bessette, Staff Writer

Imagine walking down the hallway; Black silhouettes line the walls. Students sitting in their seat waiting for the morning announcements. It is Red Ribbon Week. Red Ribbon Week honors those who have been affected by drug and alcohol abuse. People affected by drugs and alcohol range from victims of drunk drivers to those in rehab trying to beat their addiction. Drugs and Alcohol have been affecting people’s lives for decades. They have always been a hidden danger to all. Now, however, this abuse is a widespread problem. Addiction is a parasite making its way into the brain, spreading, and influencing every movement and thought, as if somebody is  a puppet on strings and an evil man is pulling them in the direction away from their family, friends, and possible successes. Red Ribbon Week, October 23rd to the 30th, was created to inform people of these dangers and to make sure that there is an awareness of this epidemic.

GHS participates in Red Ribbon Week to raise awareness. This year Peer Outreach invested a significant amount of energy to make this week as recognized as possible. On Tuesday the 22nd, Peer Outreach organized a guest speaker, Ryan Fowler to come in and talk about his experiences with drug and alcohol abuse. About 80 students and faculty joined together in the step room to hear his story. He was raw with detail and didn’t hold anything back.

In preparation for Red Ribbon Week, Peer Outreach members visited PREPS and asked the students one simple question: Why are you substance (drugs and alcohol etc.) free? “Most of the responses were very thought out and personal” Stearns said. These responses played a key role in recognizing Red Ribbon Week. Peer Outreach printed out life-size silhouettes of students and printed out the quotes and placed them all throughout the school. The silhouettes represented something not many are willing to talk about in everyday conversation. “Those silhouettes got people talking. It didn’t matter if the conversation was positive or negative towards the silhouettes, but at least they were being talked about,” Stearns observed.

Peer Outreach wants Red Ribbon Week to be an important event at GHS. Despite occurring close to Homecoming week, this year, Red Ribbon Week has been noticed by students and faculty. “We were able to spread the word. We got it out there and that is really the best we can do,” Stearns admitted.