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The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids Celebrates Fourth Annual National Above The Influence Day
Office of National Drug Control Policy and Mentor Foundation USA Collaborate to Help Teens Rise Above Negative Influences, Social Pressures
October 27, 2015, New York, NY – The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids today announced the celebration of the Fourth Annual Above the Influence (ATI) Day. Taking place at the House of Sweden in Washington D.C, Above the Influence Day is a national event that celebrates teens across the country who choose to rise above the negative influences in their lives to be their best selves. The Office of National Drug Control Policy and Mentor Foundation USA are also partnering to host ATI Day, which is a part of the Above the Influence program, coordinated and run by the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. Also in attendance will be Maris Jones, a social media influencer and recent ATI collaborator.
“We are so excited to be hosting the fourth annual ATI Day and we encourage local youth serving organizations to mark this day by engaging with teens to explore the influences in their lives. These include the positives and negatives that impact the choices teens make for themselves, including drug and alcohol use,” said Andrew Hertzberg, Director of Youth Programs for the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. “ATI Day is truly a day to celebrate the strength of young people across the country and is a terrific way to conclude National Substance Use Prevention Month in October.”
“We know that roughly 90 percent of American youth do not use illicit drugs, and a majority don’t engage in any sort of substance use,” said Michael Botticelli, Director of National Drug Control Strategy. “During ATI Day, we celebrate their strength and encourage them to keep working in their schools and communities to prevent drug use and its consequences.”
ATI Day activities will be marked with music, games and giveaways for teens attending the event. Mentor Foundation USA will also engage the audience with poetry and workshops, highlighted by a performance from teen music artist Victoria Marchlewski, winner of the fifth annual GRAMMY Foundation® and MusiCares® Teens Make Music Contest. ATI Day will also feature the unveiling of a new, interactive gaming experience that allows teens to rise above negative messages in social media.
“At Mentor Foundation USA we work to prevent drug abuse among youth, while helping them identify and pursue their personal and professional goals,” said Gunilla Girardo, President and CEO of Mentor Foundation USA. “Partnering with ONDCP and Above the Influence directly aligns with our mission to inform and educate as many young people as possible on the dangers of drugs and the benefits of making smart, healthy and well informed decisions.”
Leading up to Above the Influence Day, teens were asked to identify and share the negative influences they encounter and strive to rise above. These will be shared as a part of the event and nationally on ATI’s social networks that include Facebook, Instagram and Tumblr.
More on the Above the Influence Program
The Above the Influence program, now entering its ninth year, has been proven effective in reducing teen substance abuse. Its positive impact has been documented in several studies published in respected peer-reviewed journals including American Journal of Public Health and Prevention Science.
To become an ATI partner please visit atipartnerships.com.
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About the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids
The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids is dedicated to reducing substance abuse among adolescents by supporting families and engaging with teens. We develop public education campaigns that drive awareness of teen substance abuse, and lead teen-targeted efforts that inspire young people to make positive decisions to stay healthy and avoid drugs and alcohol. On our website, drugfree.org, and through our toll-free helpline (1-855-DRUGFREE), we provide families with direct support and guidance to help them address teen substance abuse. Finally, we build healthy communities, advocating for greater access to adolescent treatment and funding for youth prevention programs. As a national nonprofit, we depend on donations from individuals, corporations, foundations and the public sector and are thankful to SAG-AFTRA and the advertising and media industries for their ongoing generosity. We are proud to receive a Four-Star rating from Charity Navigator, America’s largest and most-utilized independent evaluator of charities, as well as a National Accredited Charity Seal from The Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance.
About the Office of National Drug Control Policy
The Office of National Drug Control Policy seeks to foster healthy individuals and safe communities by effectively leading the Nation’s effort to reduce drug use and its consequences. The Obama Administration’s drug policy treats the national drug challenge as both a public health and public safety issue.This approach is built upon the latest scientific research demonstrating that addiction is a chronic disease of the brain that can be successfully prevented and treated, and from which one can recover. The Administration has directed Federal agencies to expand community-based efforts to prevent drug use before it begins, empower healthcare workers to intervene early at the first signs of a substance use disorder, expand access to treatment for those who need it, support the millions of Americans in recovery, and pursue “smart on crime” approaches to drug enforcement.
Mentor Foundation USA
Headquartered in Washington DC, the Mentor Foundation USA’s mission is to prevent drug abuse among youth and help them realize their potential. We offer programs that combine the best of international and US prevention efforts. We view prevention and youth development as a collective civil responsibility; therefore, we partner with the business community, government agencies, schools and parents to create healthy and productive pathways for youth. Mentor Foundation was founded in 1994 by H.M. Queen Silvia of Sweden and the World Health Organization (WHO).