Pubdate: Thu, 29 Oct 2009
Source: News-Gazette, The (Champaign, IL)
Copyright: 2009 The News-Gazette
Author: Julie Wurth


CHAMPAIGN - Teens and younger children competed in a trivia contest at
the Don Moyer Boys and Girls Club on Wednesday, but it wasn't just fun
and games.

A sample question: The most commonly abused drug in the United States 
is a) marijuana, b) alcohol, c) cocaine, d) heroin. (Answer: a).

The contest was one of many drug-prevention activities under way at
the club as part of "Red Ribbon Week."

Coordinator Sonya Lynch said the theme of Red Ribbon Week ties in
nicely with the Don Moyer club's "Smart Moves" program, which promotes
abstinence and teaches kids how to avoid drugs, alcohol and tobacco.

"The program is basically geared to help them make better choices in
life," Lynch said. "Red Ribbon Week is one way to teach it."

The nation's oldest and largest drug-prevention program in the
nation, Red Ribbon Week is held the last week of October every year,
according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Supporters wear red ribbons, participate in anti-drug events and
pledge to live a drug-free life. The national effort began as a
tribute to Enrique "Kiki" Camarena, a veteran Drug Enforcement Agent
who was kidnapped, tortured and killed by Mexican drug traffickers in

The Don Moyer club organized presentations for kids by the Champaign
County Public Health Department, Urbana Police Department and Urbana
Fire Department. The University of Illinois women's softball team
talked to club members Tuesday about dreams that can be lost through
drug abuse.

An event for parents Monday night included strategies for preventing
underage drinking and drug abuse.

Children also had a chance to enter an art or essay contest about drug
prevention, which drew about 50 entries. Winners in three age groups
will be announced Friday and will receive gift certificates to Toys
'R' Us, Beverly Cinemas or Foot Locker.

Marlaine Guillaume, lead program assistant at the club, wrote trivia
questions geared to four different age groups.

Daeja Hines, 8, and Sarina Wilske, 7, won Dora the Explorer hair
accessories for knowing that you shouldn't take drugs if you're
pregnant and that you can't smoke until you're 18 years old.

"You could hurt yourself and hurt your baby," Daeja

"If people smoke at 6 or 7 or younger, their lungs could get black and
they could die," Sarina added.

Dayton Coleman, 8, said he learned "to not do drugs. They can make you
really sick and you'll pass out." And, he said, "If somebody tries to
give you a drug, say no and just walk away."

Guillaume thinks the kids got the message because it's one they hear

"It's not just a one-week thing," she said. "It's a continuing thing
here at the club." 
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