HILO, Hawai‘i — Underage drinking is not “somebody’s” problem. It’s everybody’s problem. The cost in dollars, nationwide, is enormous at $62 billion, but the cost in heartbreak and family crisis are much higher. The Hawai‘i Island chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) is doing its best to prevent underage drinking, by hosting a “Community Power Night,” Friday, August 9, 2013, 5:30-8 p.m. at the YWCA in Hilo.
With separate tracks for adults, teens and young children, the Community Power Night is designed to share information and alternatives from a broad range of organizations and individuals. The event is free and complimentary pupus are provided, along with a parenting workshop, youth leadership and expression, and group support. For young children, facepainting, crafts and storytelling activities will be shared.
“For youth, we want to create an environment where they feel free to express themselves and their ideas about drugs and alcohol,” said Aaron Collins, Program Coordinator for Hawai‘i Island MADD. “We also have MADD’s ‘Power of Parenting’ workshop and different resources to help parents, and possibly enlighten them about how positive parenting contributes to good choices,” said Collins. “We aren’t here to lecture, but to start a discussion, and our handbook with facts and information.”
Collins said that all kinds of community organizations are more than welcome to join in the free event, as well as service providers, support groups, resources for family strengthening and healthy alternatives to drug and alcohol use. “MADD offers a 30-minute workshop and we wanted to give something more, not just information about drugs and alcohol, but about positive alternatives that are available in the community for kids.”
Representatives from BJ Penn Training and Fitness Center, Big Island Cheer, Boys and Girls Clubs and others will be on hand to share information. The event is free and a great selection of doorprizes will be awarded, including gift certificates, ‘ukulele, gym memberships, health products, and more. For more information about the Community Power Night, or MADD Hawai‘i Island, contact Aaron Collins at 808-934-0300 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The North Hawaii Drug-Free Coalition, a project of Five Mountains Hawai‘i, is a regional volunteer organization committed to developing strong, sustaining relationships for Healthy Communities Choosing to Live Drug Free. For more information, visit www.fivemountains.org/nhdfc