Archive for Wednesday, October 23, 2002

School focuses on drugs awareness

October 23, 2002

Following a stint in the United States Marine Corps, Enrique Camarena joined the Drug Enforcement Agency.

While with the DEA, Camarena uncovered a drug conspiracy that included officers in the Mexican army, police and government. But the criminals would never be brought to justice.

Camarena, 37, was murdered, after several hours of prolonged torture because of what he uncovered.

His sacrifice in the war on drugs can be felt across the country, including the Basehor-Linwood School District, where elementary school students are vowing not to take drugs.

This week, Basehor and Glenwood Ridge elementary school students will participate in Red Ribbon Week, a week designed to educate children on the pitfalls of using illegal narcotics.

Linwood Elementary School students will host their Red Ribbon campaign next week.

"If we can reach just one child, then it's been worth it," said Connie Weltha, Linwood Elementary School counselor.

"We don't have a DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) program and we weren't doing anything in particular on drug awareness. This just seemed like a good opportunity to participate," Weltha added.

The Red Ribbon program was implemented in the school district last year by Weltha, GRE counselor Marilyn McGowan and BES counselor Ellen Knight.

The week long program includes day events such as "United We Stand for a Drug Free Land," "Stamp Out Drugs," and "Drugs Make You Batty."

The National Family Partnership organized the first national Red Ribbon campaign in 1988. Since that time, the campaign has reached millions of U.S. children.

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