BN Parents continues to strengthen partnerships with District 87, Unit 5 and Central Catholic High School. Since the beginning of the school year, these partnerships have allowed key access to high school parents, the population being targeted with messages addressing concerns related to underage drinking and encouraging parents to talk to their children about alcohol. These partnerships have taken the form of participation at local school events and most recently in a letter format mailed directly to the home of each area high school parent.
In the fall, BN Parents could be seen at local high school sporting events and Open Houses. Evidence of the group’s presence reflected in materials indicating “Parents Make a Difference” with direction to the website, www.bnparents.org. At football games, vinyl footballs were tossed by cheerleaders. Water bottles at the soccer games were shared with parents and students alike. Pens, pencils and brochures were readily passed out allowing the message to be carried away from each event. The general reception to the group was favorable with conversations being started regarding local alcohol use rates and what parents can do to help.
During the month of December, in partnership with BN Parents, each school’s principal developed a letter sharing concerns related to the threat underage drinking poses to the overall success and health of high school students. Accompanying the letter was the BN Parents brochure, Alcohol. Had the Talk?, and direction to the BN Parents website. Each parent should have received the letter prior to heading into winter break. It is hoped parents will take an opportunity to have guiding conversations with their teens over the holiday.
Looking ahead to 2013, BN Parents hopes to see success in continued partnerships with the schools and cross- community sector support. Watch for the message… Talk to your teen about alcohol and know that Parents Make a Difference!