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the best

me is


October 20-28 2012

It’s that time again! Spread the news! Get involved! Let’s do this! Join DREAM and the Mississippi Department of Mental Health, Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Services as we remind others of the importance of living a

WHY Red Ribbon Week is IMPORTANt

drug-free and healthy life.

Red Ribbon Week is held every October and is one of the oldest and largest drug prevention campaigns in the country. It provides a time to pledge to live a safe and drug-free life, celebrate those who do not use drugs, remember those whom we have lost in the fight against drugs, and honor those who work to promote living a life free from drug use and addiction. Red Ribbon Week allows individuals and communities to take a stand against drug use through a commitment to drug prevention and education and a personal commitment to live life drug-free. National Red Ribbon Week is celebrated every year in October and is dedicated to Enrique “Kiki” Camarena. Camarena was a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agent who sacrificed his life to prevent drugs from entering our country. This week is also dedicated to all people killed as a result of drug-related violence. Millions get involved in the Red Ribbon Campaign’s efforts. No other single drug prevention movement has had such an impact on so many lives.

Red Ribbon Week is a special time to focus on drug prevention. The week is not the only time when individuals, schools, businesses, organizations and communities should focus on prevention. It is intended to assess and increase current efforts. The observance of Red Ribbon Week focuses on educating individuals, families, and communities on not only the destructive effects of drugs, but also positive alternative life choices available to our youth and adults. The red ribbon, a symbol of zero tolerance for drug use and a commitment to drug prevention, is worn by hundreds of Americans as an act of unity.

Have a GREAT

Red Ribb on


WHAT TO WEAR RED RIBBON WEEK: Have fun dressing up and showing support for Red Ribbon Week!

Monday: Living Healthy and Drug-Free is No SWEAT! Get out your favorite sweatshirt and/or sweatpants.

Tuesday: Sock it to Drugs Put on your wackiest and wildest socks.

Wednesday: Drugs and I Don’t Mix Wear mismatched clothing.

Thursday: I’m Proud to be Drug-Free See how much red you can wear!

Friday: Stay in the Game & Stay Away From Drugs

A message to share with Parents...

It’s not pestering. It’s parenting. Know what your children are doing. Be involved. Set limits. Raise and reward good behavior. Ask questions. Ask who. Ask what. Ask when. Ask where. Keep lines of communication open. First, YOU LISTEN. Then you talk. Take the time!

Everyone can wear their favorite sports jersey.

Don’t forget to take lots of pictures and share them on Facebook and Twitter!

EXPLAINING THE MESSAGE BEHIND THE RIBBON Okay, so we all put on our ribbons during Red Ribbon Week, but what does that ribbon mean? The red ribbon is a pledge, or a promise. When we wear the ribbon, we are promising that we will stay away from drugs. Not only today, but tomorrow, and every day after.

The Story


out of it. “I can’t not do this,” he told his mom. “I’m only one person, but I want to make a difference.”

The DEA sent Camarena to work undercover in Mexico investigating a major drug cartel. It was believed to include officers in the Mexican army, police, and government. On Feb. 7, 1985, the 37-yearEnrique “Kiki” Camarena grew old Camarena left his office to up in a house with dirt floors. He meet his wife for lunch. Five men had dreams of making a appeared at the agent’s difference. side and shoved him I’m only Camarena worked his one person, into a car. One month later, Camarena’s body way through college, but I want was found in a shallow served in the Marines to make a grave- he had been and became a police difference. tortured to death. officer. When he decided to join the U.S. Within weeks of his Drug Enforcement Administration death, Camarena’s Congressman, (DEA), his mother tried to talk him Duncan Hunter, and high school

the Symbol

friend Henry Lozano launched Camarena Clubs in Camarena’s hometown of Imperial Valley, California. Hundreds of club members pledged to lead drug-free lives to honor the sacrifices made by Camarena and others for the protection of all Americans. These coalitions started wearing red badges of satin red ribbons in memory of Camarena. The Red Ribbon Week campaign emerged from the efforts of these clubs and coalitions. It helps to preserve Special Agent Camarena’s memory and further the cause for which he gave his life. -excerpted from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, www.


ribbon IDEAS FOR RED RIBBON WEEK ACTIVITIES CREATE A CHARACTER Reproduce the figure below on a sheet of paper. Provide markers or colored pencils to students. At the center of the figure, students may write their name. Using words, symbols, or magazine cut-outs, have students create a picture of their best selves.

Identify popular music/musicians that encourage/ discourage ATOD use through their music, behavior, or attitudes.

SHOW AND TELL Have students bring in an item for show and tell that illustrates their passion. During show and tell, have them explain why they choose their passion over drugs.

THAT’S MY ANTI-DRUG! Have group sit in a circle in chairs or on the floor. Let the group know that you will be calling out various pastimes, hobbies, and interests such as fishing, sewing, cooking, playing soccer, etc. in the format of “Who likes…?” Each time a question is asked, if the activity is of interest to that person, that person jumps up and says, “That’s me!” Continue until the entire group is standing. Once everyone is standing have them look around the room and acknowledge that everyone can stand up and be counted as having an interest or antidrug that matters in their lives. Have everyone return to their seats and lead a discussion about how these activities can be considered anti-drugs and what the benefits of these activities are in their lives.


HAND IN HAND BANNER Using a roll of white paper, such as butcher paper or bulletin board paper, cut off a banner sized piece. Using large block letters, write on the banner “Hand in Hand Let’s Take a Stand Against Alcohol, Tobacco and Drugs.” Place the banner on a wall in a prominent location.

Divide students into two groups. Using NIDA’s Shatter the Myths Booklet (http://drugfactsweek.drugabuse. gov/booklet.php) and NIDA’s Teen Web site (http:// write down questions and answers on index cards. Have someone keep score. Each correct answer gains one point. The team with the most correct answers, and hence the highest score, wins a prize. (Make sure to have prizes available!)

DRUG-FREE PLEDGE I Pledge To lead a healthy, drug-free lifestyle. I will say NO to tobacco, alcohol and other drugs. I will help my friends say NO. I pledge to stand up for what I know is right. I pledge to have respect for others. I pledge to be the best me.

Using red paper, have students trace around their hand and then cut them out. Then have students glue or tape their hand to the banner.

HOW DO YOU LIVE YOUR NO? Have students write essays about how they live their NO! and what their passion is (sports, music, reading, etc.) that keeps them healthy. *Submit a few essays to DREAM, Inc. at for a chance to be featured on the DREAM Web site.

GETTING REAL: MESSAGE IN THE MEDIA EXERCISE Bring tobacco and alcohol advertisements to school for a classroom collage, discuss the messages behind the ads, and identify the advertising approaches being used. Explain why the message is untrue. Display the collages in the school hallway.

Signature: Date:

Non-Profit Org. U.S. Postage


Jackson, MS Permit No. 282

310 Airport Road • Jackson, MS 39208

SUBSTANCE ABUSE PREVENTION RESOURCES Mississippi Department of Mental Health, Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Services DREAM, Inc. Mississippi Prevention Network Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration National Institute on Drug Abuse NIDA’s Teen Site The Anti-Drug

RED RIBBON WEEK RESOURCES If you would like to order Red Ribbon Week materials and supplies, visit these retailers: NIMCO Positive Promotions Red Ribbon Resources DREAM is neither responsible for the contents of these Web sites nor does it endorse any product or service provided by any other organization or Web site listed.

25 WAYS TO CELEBRATE Red Ribbon Week 1. Wear a red ribbon or sticker. 2. Get your community, school, or church involved in Red Ribbon Week. 3. Volunteer to help with activities or plan activities for your club, school, or youth group. 4. Get involved in Red Ribbon Week events in your school or community. 5. Talk to someone special about Red Ribbon Week. 6. Use this week as a “teachable moment” and talk to someone about making healthy decisions and resisting peer pressure. 7. Decorate your front door with red ribbons. 8. Give prizes to students wearing red ribbons each day. 9. Sign pledges to be drug-free. 10. H  ost a special “drug awareness evening” for the community or school. 11. H  ost a Red Ribbon program with student performances such as skits and songs. 12. D  ecorate the classroom or the entire school. 13. O  ffer discounted admission to home ball games or events to anyone wearing red or a red ribbon.

Coordinated by DREAM, Inc. Funded in whole or part by the Mississippi Department of Mental Health, Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Services.

Find us on Facebook. Check out our wall each day during Red Ribbon Week for a chance to win prizes! Red Ribbon Times 2012 • Editor: Rachel Deer • Design: Jenny Winstead

14. H  ave a red ribbon decorating contest. 15. S  ponsor a Red Ribbon Week event or help purchase red ribbons for a local school. 16. O  ffer advertising for drug-free messages. 17. H  ave football team members “Team Up Against Drugs” by wearing ribbons on their jerseys or helmets during games. 18. P  rovide staff development or a staff lunch and invite someone to speak on drug prevention in the workplace. 19. A  sk local businesses to provide incentives or discounts to customers who wear red ribbons. 20. F  ocus lesson plans around making healthy decisions and living a healthy life. 21. P  ray for those affected by drug use and violence. 22. P  lan a service project or activity related to drug prevention. 23. H  old a candlelight vigil for victims of drunk driving and drug-related crimes. 24. P  ost drug prevention messages on your Facebook page. 25. E  ncourage someone who uses tobacco to quit.


310 Airport Road • Jackson, MS 39208 (601) 933-9199

Mississippi Department of Mental Health Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Services 1101 Robert E. Lee Building 239 N. Lamar Street • Jackson, MS 39201 1-877-210-8513

Red Ribbon Times 2012 newsletter  

Red Ribbon Times newsletter is published once a year as a resource and guide to Red Ribbon Week.