Letter to the editor: D.A.R.E. needs donations to help continue fighting drug abuse in Liberty County

The D.A.R.E. program or Drug Abuse Resistance Education Program was created in 1983 and has been implemented in Liberty County School Districts since 1992. We have been able to establish and achieve our goals through 100 percent community support and donations. We currently serve five school districts in Liberty County and greatly appreciate any assistance you may grant our organization.

The D.A.R.E program or Keepin’ It Real curriculum educates approximately 800-1,200 students a year in our community. Which on average cost over $5,000 per school year. We teach children to make safe and responsible decisions through drug abuse awareness, health effects, resistance strategies, communicating effectively and confidently when faced with risky situations, responding to peer pressure, reporting bullying and much more. Our students are supplied with planners, pencils, stickers, T-shirts, booklets, bags, awards and graduation certificates. Each student must complete the program by writing an essay of their experience, knowledge and participation during the D.A.R.E course along with various other awards.

We have recently added Opioids and prescription/over-the-counter drug curriculum for all age groups.  New education tools have also been created to introduce Vaping curriculum and Mental Health Awareness to upper grade levels. Both of which are becoming national epidemics in this country. Extra funding is needed for these programs for pamphlets given to students.

In addition to the Keepin’ It Real program, D.A.R.E participates in a community outreach program specific to Liberty County. The REAL Friends Program was created by Officer Taylor in conjunction with the D.A.R.E program to get students involved at giving back to their community. We have given to our local VFWs and nursing facilities, Wounded Warrior Project, local fire and police first responders. With the donations giving by private citizens we were able to donate five picnic tables to Hull-Daisetta Elementary School after Hurricane Ike.  We also assist with giving through parent booklets, participating in local health fairs and local events to educate the community. As you can see, we have a large need for funding to this valuable and successful program.

If you would like to support our local D.A.R.E program please contact my office at 936-336-4639 or email me at ctaylor@co.liberty.tx.us. One hundred percent of all proceeds support your local D.A.R.E program. You may mail donations of any amount to:

Liberty County Courthouse, 1923 Sam Houston Ste. 112, D.A.R.E Division, Liberty, Texas 77575.

Thank you for your continued support and generous donations,

Christine Taylor, Investigator/D.A.R.E Officer

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