Red Ribbon Week is a national celebration held every year at the end of October that promotes living a healthy and drug-free life! Schools and communities across the country come together to support this mission and establish prevention efforts with youth from kindergarten through senior year of high school and beyond.
This year's Red Ribbon Week theme was “Be Happy, Be Brave, Be Drug Free!” It was a call to action to speak out in support of healthy choices and be willing to set a positive example, in addition to pointing out the benefits of living drug-free. It also serves as a reminder that we are all empowered with shaping our community and most importantly, our youth! It takes a village, and Hancock County showed up in a big way!
Several members of local government and law enforcement agencies came together in partnership of HYPE's mission to keep Hancock County youth healthy and substance-free!
Educators play a major role in celebrating Red Ribbon Week, as well as spreading the message to parents and caregivers about the importance of encouraging their children to make positive choices. Hancock Youth for Positive Efforts (HYPE) hosted a Door Decorating Contest for all elementary schools in Hancock County, honoring the “Be Happy, Be Brave, Be Drug Free” theme, and had some amazing submissions from those who were able to participate in the festivities! One class per grade will receive a very special prize in honor of their awesome designs. A special thank you to Mrs. Tara Ladner, Principal of Hancock High School, and Mrs. Andree Bonnaffons, Director of Guidance at St. Stanislaus College, for showing off their red ribbons during Red Ribbon Week, and ensuring the celebration was observed for older students as well!
Several HYPE sponsors commemorated the occasion by wearing red ribbons and sharing the message with their staff and clientele. Kelly Cannon State Farm Insurance, Coca Cola, Claiborne Hill Supermarket (Waveland location), Coast Electric Power Association, St. Clare Catholic Church, Bay St. Louis Creative Arts Center, Silver Slipper Casino, and Cuz’s Oyster Bar & Grille are the incredible organizations that support HYPE throughout the year! From hosting meetings and HYPE Hangouts, to celebrating annual awareness initiatives like Red Ribbon Week, their role in building a healthy, safe environment for Hancock County youth and giving back to the community is so very valued and appreciated!
The best part of Red Ribbon Week 2020 were the youth and HYPE members who celebrated the true meaning beyond wearing red and decorations, committing to stay drug-free throughout their middle and high school experiences and into adulthood! HYPE was honored to have the support of so many organizations, institutions, and community members throughout Red Ribbon Week, and can’t wait for next year!
For more information on Hancock Youth for Positive Efforts, living a drug-free lifestyle, and what it means to #believetheHYPE, contact Cathy Pitalo at firstname.lastname@example.org.