The event will be held at the High School of Economics & Finance, 100 Trinity Place, New York, NY 10006 on Wednesday, April 20 from 8.30 a.m. to 10.30 a.m. Immediately following the event there will be a media debrief.
The event is only open to media with appropriate credentials. Please send your media credentials to Amy Mangino at [email protected].
The “Shattering the Myths” event is hosted by Mentor Foundation USA, in partnership with the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). Special guest speakers include Dr. Maureen Boyle, Chief of the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) Science and Policy Branch and Dr. Lonise Bias, who will be presenting both a moving parent testimonial and a motivational topic centered around poor choices that can lead to drug abuse.
During the event, students will have the opportunity to have their questions answered by a leading NIDA scientist, and hear the truth about the dangers of substance abuse. The program concludes with slam poetry performances by students from the High School of Economics & Finance where they will express and share their own stories centered around substance abuse.
“This event is so important because it inspires and motivates youth to become their own advocates for drug-prevention by allowing them to dispel (media) myths and make educated choices,” says Gunilla Girardo, President and CEO of Mentor Foundation USA. “Since 2011, when Mentor Foundation USA began organizing these youth rallies, we have reached more than 10,000 high school students in D.C., Maryland, Virginia, and Columbia County, NY. This is our premiere event in New York City and we are excited to expand our youth rallies to students across the city.”
In conjunction with the “Shattering the Myths” event, H.M. Queen Silvia of Sweden will address the UNGASS (UN General Assembly Special Session), organized by UNODC (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime) April 19th on the topic of drug prevention among young people via an international campaign in conjunction with the World Health Organization (WHO).
Background: About one-third of high school seniors across the country reported using an illicit drug sometime in the past year, and more than ten percent reported non-medical use of a narcotic painkiller. While drugs can put a teenager’s health and life in jeopardy, many teens are not aware of the true risks. Even for those teens who do not abuse drugs, many have friends or family who do, and they are often looking for information and ways to help them.
About Mentor Foundation USA: Our mission is to prevent drug abuse among youth while helping them identify and pursue their goals. The Shattering the Myths program is a major part of our drug prevention platform.
Mentor Foundation USA is an affiliate of Mentor International, which was founded in 1994 by Her Majesty Queen Silvia of Sweden and the World Health Organization. We operate as a Federation with national chapters in the United States, United Kingdom, Sweden, Lithuania, Latvia, Denmark, Germany, Colombia, and a regional operation in Lebanon, which includes 22 Arab League countries. Collectively, we have implemented projects in over 80 countries and impacted more than 6 million lives.
UNODC was created in 1997 to help the United Nations deal with matters relating to the control of illegal drugs, crime prevention, human trafficking, and international terrorism in all its forms.