By Amanda Cox
If you didn’t know about the Heartland Youth Coalition, then this is the time to learn about it.
Students from Washington County Middle School and Washington County High School are making a difference in the community.
This group is led by very caring and compassionate people: Wilma Sorrell, Issac Frye, Jaclyn Jones, and Cathy Carrico.
We participate in many events to keep Washington County safe from drugs, drinking, tobacco, and many other dangerous activities.
The Youth Coalition hosts events such as the BLAST event for students in 4th and 5th grade.
Teen leaders play games, plan and put on workshops, and it’s just a lot of fun.
We teach them what the consequences are for participating in such activities while having fun at the same time.
The Youth Coalition also takes an annual trip to the nursing home in Springfield to sing Christmas carols and give out presents and cards.
Before Christmas break, we’ve participated in what’s known as the “Tie One On” event where the coalition gathers and remembers the ones we’ve lost to drunk driving, and we tie ribbons to every car in the parking lot to remind them to not drink and drive.
Channel 6 filmed the event, as well as the BLAST event, so we can make a difference to everyone in the community who is watching.
The Coalition also has participated in an event called, “I Won’t Be the One,” a teen summit, which took place in Elizabethtown Jan. 20-21.
In this event, Kentucky State Police, Communicare and other organizations trained members of the RISE Youth Coalition to “Take a Stand against Underage Drinking” and make a difference in our community.
On April 27, we will be participating in the Kick Butts Day at the Salt River Electric office from 3:30 p.m. until 5:30 pm.
We will be telling the community the dangers of smoking and how to prevent it.
Also taking place on June 24-26 will be the annual Youth Leadership Symposium, and the RISE Youth are the hosts and planners of this event.
These are only a few of the activities that the coalition participates in.
We are always in need of more participants and volunteers, youth and adults.
We need more people to help make a difference in our community for our children, and even for the adults.
This is my first year in the coalition and I have experienced and learned a lot from this group.
I love being able to help my community in ways I never thought I could.
This group allows me to do that, and it’s great to be with other people who want to make a difference too.
Without this coalition, the community wouldn’t be the same. We don’t just protect today’s youth, we also protect the youth of the future.
For more information on the Washington County Heartland Youth Coalition, and information about signing your youth up for the RISE Youth Action Team, please call Issac or Wilma at 336-5470.