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Red Ribbon Week raises awareness for drug prevention

EUREKA - “This whole week is ‘Red Ribbon Week' and Red Ribbon Week is a national campaign that is the largest public awareness, nationally, crime prevention, and drug awareness in the nation,” Officer Matt Harvey, Public Information Officer with California Highway Patrol, said.

California Highway Patrol, Humboldt Bay Fire, Public Health, and other agencies held activities at lunchtime today for Zane Middle School students.

“If we can reach out to kids at a young age, junior high and high schoolers, when they're still willing to listen, and we come out and try to build relationships and hopefully we can get them to start making good decisions at a young age that will set the path for their entire life,” Officer Harvey said.

Other schools throughout the county are holding events this week as well. Public safety officers know it is an important topic for the area we live in.

“Especially in a place like Humboldt County, where certain types of drugs like marijuana is rampant, I think it's particularly important to come out to the community and schools and educate about drugs,” Officer Harvey said.

For Zane Middle School, it goes beyond drugs.

“Red Ribbon Week is about making good choices everyday, all the time, specifically in terms of drugs and red ribbon week, but we expand it to be healthy living week so students are thinking about making good choices in every part of their life,” Ron Perry, Assistant Principal at Zane Middle School, said.

The Red Ribbon Campaign has been fighting against drugs since the 1980’s, teaching kids how to live healthier lives.

“It's much broader than saying yes or no to drugs or crime, but empowering the kids and letting them know they have a choice, they have a say in what they do or don't do,” Officer Harvey said.