From ‘Yes 2 Know’

RCMP brings drug awareness to students in the Alberni Valley.

Walk the Coast business manager Michael Sutherland

Port Alberni kids transitioning between elementary and high school will get a burst of drug awareness thanks to a new two-day program.

Yes 2 Know is a province-wide RCMP-led initiative that seeks to give youth the knowledge about how to say ‘no to drugs’ now.

The program goes beyond the DARE education that Grade 5 students receive.

The Port Alberni Yes 2 Know edition takes place from April 5-6 and is a partnership between the RCMP, the school district parent advisory council and sponsors like Valley Vision and Brent Manson’s office.

“It’s the Youth Empowerment Summit. ‘Know’ is for knowledge and we’ve broken that down further to the word ‘now.’ It’s important for kids to ‘know this stuff now’ so that they can make healthy choices now as opposed to waiting,’ said Central Island RCMP Cpl. Dave Cusson.

Cusson, who used to be based in Port Alberni, is with the drugs and organized crime awareness service in Nanaimo.

“That’s what the convention is about. It’s a highlight to kids at their vulnerable times, pre- and post-transition.”

The two-day event targets Grade 7s, Grade 8s and their parents.

“The first day is for all the Grade 7s in the school district. They’ll be participating in a full day of prevention education,” said Cusson.

“They’ll be going through a variety of keynote speakers, fun activities, food, they’ll all get a t-shirt, there will be prizes… it’s meant to be a highlight of their grade.”

Grade 7s will listen to keynote speaker Jesse Miller.

“He’s an expert in the world of online citizenship—how kids represent themselves in an online environment.”

Cusson said it’s important to get the Grade 7s before they move onto high school.

But its important for Grade 8s to learn the information too.

“They’re already post transition so their day is a little different,” said Cusson.

Some of the keynotes will stay the same, however.

“There will be a keynote about brains and brain development and another keynote talking about social belonging.”

Grade 8s will get educated on marijuana by criminology interns working with Cusson.

“They’ve been specially trained to talk about marijuana and decision making,” Cusson said.

“The Grade 8s have identified that that’s an issue—that drug (marijuana) is really starting to show itself.”

But Cusson wants to educate the entire community, not just the students, by hosting a community night on April 5 at 6 p.m.

“I’ve partnered with the district parent advisory council and they’re hosting a parent night for the community.”

The three-hour event will feature community resources and keynote speakers.

“Gary Anaka, the brain guy, is going to talk about how to connect to the teen brain,” said Cusson. Parents will also hear from Jesse Miller about how to create boundaries and expectations in their children’s online usage.

While drug awareness programs already exist for students in Port Alberni, Cusson sees this as a way to make a bigger impact.

“There is a drug prevention continuum going on here. DARE is our foundational drug awareness piece and then we build a piece after that called Being True and the [Yes2Know] convention kicks in in the middle,” said Cusson. The event is meant to spur on conversation outside of just the two days.

“After that, we have post-convention strategies for the kids in Grade 9, 10, 11.”

For more information, visit www.bcy2k.com/port-alberni or www.facebook.com/yes2know.

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

facebook.com/albernivalleynews

twitter.com/alberninews

 

Just Posted

City of Port Alberni issues water quality alert for Kitsuksis Creek area

Kitsuksis Creek residents urged to use alternate drinking water source

Rain and high winds to hit Vancouver Island this afternoon

Thursday and Friday to see downpour of 20 to 50mm and high winds on Vancouver Island

Learn the basics of publishing at Port Alberni workshop

George Opacic of Rutherford Press will present keys to the professional side of publishing

Septic truck rolls over without a spill west of Port Alberni

Single vehicle crash took place on Klekhoot Crescent

Vancouver Island partners sign hull design contract for floating LNG project

Steelhead LNG and partner Huu-ay-aht First Nations say the agreement was signed in Barcelona

Sproat Lake hosts fall dragon boat regatta

Port Alberni’s Sproat Ness Dragons earn third place

Horvat leads Canucks to 4-3 shootout victory over Kings

Vancouver dumps L.A. in NHL pre-season contest

Update: Search called off for missing plane between Edmonton and Chilliwack

Search efforts were concentrated along the Highway 5 corridor between Valemount and Kamloops

Why Whistler for ski jumping in 2026? Calgary proposal gets pushback

Calgary 2026 proposes re-using the 2010 ski jumping venue Whistler for that sport and nordic

Despite progress, threat of 232 tariffs dominates NAFTA negotiations

Any deal is seen to require congressional approval before Dec. 1 to survive new Mexican government

VIDEO: Hundreds line highway as family brings home body of B.C. teen

Northern B.C. showed their support by lining Hwy 16 as Jessica Patrick’s body returned to Smithers.

B.C. MP Todd Doherty receives award for saving man who collapsed on a plane

Conservative MP was flying from Vancouver to Prince George, B.C., in June last year

Alleged border jumper from Oregon facing 2 charges after police chase in B.C.

Colin Patrick Wilson charged with dangerous operation of motor vehicle, flight from a peace officer

More than 35 B.C. mayors elected without contest

No other candidates for mayor in the upcoming local election in 22 per cent of B.C. cities

Most Read