During the past twenty years, there have been many strategies and programs which have been developed in the community for teens and young adults, hoping to gain some momentum against self destructive behavior. Prevention and intervention have been historically conceived to address those addictions that our youth are experiencing. Anti-drug campaigns, motivational speakers, group support, mentorship, and family counseling services have been utilized repeatedly; all with limited success.
Students Step Up
Students in our school district asked for more. Too many friends were dying. They voiced a need for groups that were more effective and more meaningful, while providing a pattern for positive living. Several of the students, who had attended AA meetings with friends or family members, wanted to try a 12 step program at school. They admired the commitment that they witnessed in this program; however, they wanted to create their own format, one that would be more relative to teens. Therefore, the students edited the program to fit the needs of this generation.
It was through student insistence that Teen Addiction Anonymous finally became a part of our high school prevention efforts.
Since this program was created for students in terms of addressing any and all addictive behavior, a new name was chosen for this group. The title, MPOWRD, the challenge to lead, encompasses a comprehensive curriculum that is relevant for all teens and young adults who are committed to positive personal change for self or in support of others.
The time is now. Meet with your school administration, youth support organizations, and legislative contacts to develop support for prevention programs for teens and young adults in your community. Where youth are faced with continuous challenges, where families are often struggling, and where teen lives are in constant jeopardy, MPOWRD meetings are an opportunity for this generation to witness its potential and to focus and commit to positive life decisions.