April 3rd was a big day of celebration for Mentor Foundation USA and global fashion retailer H&M when Jack Somers and Evan Barnard of Johns Creek, GA, were honored at a special award ceremony at their local high school.

11 April 2015 | News

The entire sophomore class of 500 fellow students had gathered in the auditorium of Johns Creek High School (JCHS) to congratulate two of their own together with Principal Johnson, Assistant Principal Martin, Johns Creek Pro Tem Broadbent, teachers, parents and local media.
Jack Somers is the winner of the 2014/15 H&M Drug Free slogan contest. From among the many submissions received from teens across the U.S., this year’s winning slogan: “Be Free – Live Free – Drug Free” was unanimously selected. “I was thinking about how to be free. It’s simple: To live free and be free, you need to be drug free,” said Jack.
Jack is a multi-talented young man.  Not only does Jack excel in the classroom, he is an accomplished athlete. When asked what was so special about Jack’s slogan, Mentor Foundation Program coordinator Joseph Green replied: “It’s really the simplicity of it. It stood out to the selection committee because it encompassed the exact message we were hoping to get across.” 
Among the prizes that Jack won was a limited edition shirt with his winning slogan on it, designed by the H&M global design team. 500 of the shirts, which are sold online via, were donated to Jack’s fellow sophomore students at Johns Creek.
Joseph Green, who was the MC for the event, explained how H&M and Mentor have partnered to motivate youth to become their own advocates for staying drug free. This year the anti-drug t-shirt contest went national, garnishing a 300% increase in submissions and participants from 26 states.
“The incredible response that we have received from Johns Creek high school is very much thanks to Evan Barnard, a junior at JCHS, who is also a Youth Ambassador for Mentor Foundation USA,” said Joseph. “Evan was very much the driving force behind Johns Creek’s record-breaking number of submissions to this year’s contest.” Evan is the first recipient of Mentor Foundation USA’s ‘Living the Example’ Teen Partner In Prevention Award.
“This is a new award that we have created to highlight exceptional acts of prevention by youth all over the country,” remarked Gunilla Girardo, President & CEO of Mentor Foundation USA. Adding that: “Evan’s persistent dedication to prevention amongst his peers is why Evan was honored with the ‘Living the Example’ award.”
This event also marked the first step for Mentor Foundation USA to serve more youth in Georgia. “Johns Creek now has a presence on the growing Mentor Foundation USA national map,” remarked Gunilla. “It’s a big deal for us to be here today. We are looking forward to continuing working with Johns Creek and many more schools in this area.”