By: David J, Detweiler, Writer / Follow South Jersey Child Welfare Intern
WOODBINE, N.J. — October 26 marked the beginning of Woodbine’s Red Ribbon Week, a week centered around spreading awareness on the effects and dangers of drugs and alcohol.
Red Ribbon Week began more than 30 years ago, with its first week kicking off back in 1988. Its tenure has earned the title of the longest-standing drug awareness and prevention program in the country. This year’s Red Ribbon week was created to remember Special Agent Enrique S. Camarena, a DEA agent whose tragic passing stemmed from the war against drugs.
Special activities and events were crafted for each day of the week to help spread awareness. During Red Ribbon Week, assemblies were held to inform children on drugs and alcohol. Grades six through eight held multiple assemblies that covered the risks of vaping as well.
To begin the week, Monday marked “Proud to be Drug-Free” day. Students and staff were both encouraged to wear red in support of Red Ribbon Week. Tuesday entailed a “Peace Out To Drugs!” day in which students and staff replaced wearing the color red with throwing on tie-dye clothes or clothes with peace signs.
“Team Up Against Drugs Day” followed on Wednesday, and those at the school wore sports jerseys and numbered shirts to showcase the school’s commitment and spirit for the day. Woodbine Elementary showed true unity the following day through its “Together Our School Chooses to be Drug Free!” day. The WES students and staff dressed in their school colors to represent their school and its joint message.
To cap off the school week, Woodbine Elementary said “BOO to Drugs!” while celebrating Halloween. The school did not fail in celebrating the upcoming holiday while spreading awareness for drugs and alcohol. The school held a costume parade (while adhering to social distancing) along with a Candy Stomp event. Staff members were costumed up as their favorite story characters while they passed out candy bags, Red Ribbon Week material, and red ribbons.
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This article was produced by a Follow South Jersey news intern thanks to a grant provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation through the New Jersey Health Initiatives program to create hyper-local news to meet the informational and health needs of the City of Bridgeton, N.J.