A key part of the Shattering the Myth program is our Youth Ambassador Network to continue the spreading the facts about drugs and alcohol to their peers and show and share how they are ‘Living the Example’. Each school appoint their own Youth Ambassadors who receive leadership- and social media training along with a comprehensive tool kit to implement Change Projects with their peers. With support from the Mentor Foundation USA, the Youth Ambassadors create Change Projects to raise awareness around the negative effects of substance abuse, offer positive alternatives, and highlight the awesome contributions already being made the students at each school.
“The youth ambassador leadership training helped me understand how a small group of students can come together to make a big difference in our school and community,” says one Germantown student.
“As a Member of the Youth Ambassador Network my hope is that everyone realizes that if they are lost, there is hope.” – Meredith, Student, Ichabod Crane High School
“To plant a seed of hope in the heart of one person is to change their life for the better.” – Brendan, Student, Ichabod Crane High School
Between the three schools 41 youth ambassadors have been identified and are actively working to sustain awareness around the issues of drug and substance abuse.“I was amazed with the interactive nature of the programming. The material deeply resonated with not only the students, but also the faculty and staff. The students continue to reflect and discuss their positive experiences with Mentor Foundation USA,” states Mary D’Amico, Asst. Principal, Taconic Hills High School.
“This programming is impacting and personal for the students. Every part of the program is going to help.” – Steve Werthner, Teacher, Ichabod Crane High School.
The change projects that youth ambassadors are coming up with are creative, fun and engaging their peers. At Taconic Hills youth ambassadors have decided to do one big “Change Project” in the form of a week of events called “Shattering The Myths”. The students will create a Drug Fact Wall, which will consist of hundreds of drug facts that will be displayed at the front of the school. They will also have a Selfie Nation booth, art contest, and a scavenger hunt for their peers to participate in.
At Germantown, the Youth Ambassadors have decided to implement two change projects. The first event is a basketball night filled with competitions and prizes that will end with a student vs. faculty game as the finale. The objective is to promote healthy life choices while creating a safe space for students participate in an exciting activity. They have also decided to host a simulated automobile accident during the prom week to raise awareness around making smart decisions on prom night and beyond.
Ichabod Crane’s Youth Ambassadors came up with numerous unique events for their Shattering the Myths week. To begin the week they will create a Dream Wall, which is similar to the idea at Taconic Hills, but instead of drug facts they will be using students dreams and goals. They will be hosting a smoker breathing simulation in their PE classes, where they will do various exercises then try to breath through a straw simulating a smoker’s breathing abilities. They will also be hosting a Selfie Nation and a trivia day. For the grand finale of this week they will be hosting a movie night on their football field for the community.