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SCVNews.com | Opinion/Commentary: Applying the Right Kind of Peer Pressure | Message from the Mayor | 08-01-2013
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1963 - First stretch of Antelope Valley 14 Freeway opens from east of Solemint Junction in Canyon Country to Red Rover Mine Road in Acton. [story]


Commentary by Mayor Bob Kellar
| Thursday, Aug 1, 2013

bobkellar2012I am  pleased to share with you that this month our city – together with the Sheriff’s Department, Hart School District, L.A. County and several nonprofit agencies – is commemorating the first year of DFYIT, a drug education and teen prevention program in all of our local high schools. It is a free, school-based, voluntary anti-drug club run by and for teens.  The goal of the program is to provide a positive peer network that supports healthy choices and drug-free lifestyle.

DFYIT  turns peer pressure into something positive, whereby the pressure from friends is to stay drug-free and remain a member of the club.  The city and its partners kicked off the new club last August with the start of the fall school semester.

The DFYIT program is creating a community-wide culture shift by engaging teens, parents and the entire community in promoting a drug-free way of life.  DFYIT members receive support and are being held accountable to remain drug free.  The program thrives in an enthusiastic peer network that creates a “culture of sobriety,” whereby teens find and give support to their peers, schools and the community.  The club members serve as role models to other youth, where they positively affect future generations by promoting a drug-free lifestyle.

Parent involvement is encouraged, and the DFYIT program includes drug prevention classes and webinars to ensure parents stay on top of the latest trends and have the tools they need to reduce the chances their children will use alcohol and drugs.  Parents of club members can also volunteer at events, solicit sponsors and participate in club workshops and programs.

During our first year, we saw 800-plus students enroll in the program valley-wide.  These students provided 2,480 hours of community service in Santa Clarita.  And 100 percent of drug test results of DFYIT members who were randomly tested were negative for drugs.

If you would like more information about DFYIT, or wish to become involved, log on to www.DFYITscv.com.  As always, feel free to contact me directly with your thoughts, ideas and suggestions at bkellar@santa-clarita.com.

 

Bob Kellar is mayor of the city of Santa Clarita.

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