Parents Use Your Power

Parents are getting an education on how they can play an integral role in helping to end addiction in our community.

When it comes to stopping teen drug use, the more parents know the better.

A new online initiative being lead by 360 Youth Services called “Parents Use Your Power” is aiming to get parents to realize their role in keeping kids and teens drug free by taking five minutes a month to learn parenting tips.

“Our hope is that by them coming to our website and looking at the newsletter they’ll learn some things that are very practical for their everyday interactions with their children,” said Karen Jarczyk, Prevention Director at 360 Youth Services. “There will be things that as they’re learning they can apply, if they so choose, to strengthen their family, and if we get a whole bunch of families doing that then we get stronger as a community.”

Data taken from surveys of all the high schools in Naperville plays an important role in the program, which hopes to dispel the familiar notion that everyone is doing it.

One stat from the survey found that 78 percent of teens say they don’t drink because they don’t want to disappoint their parents.

“It’s very important for parents to know that and that’s why the new website is so important,” said Sandy Stelmach, a consultant for District 203. “It has resources that parents can learn from, everything from how to get rid of prescription medications that aren’t needed anymore to recovery from addiction.”

The Naperville Police Department is a supporter of the new program because they want to make sure parents are getting to kids before they have to.

“We know at the police department we’re not sophisticated enough, and we just don’t have the training to deal with prevention and intervention, we’re more enforcement,” said Sgt. Mark Ksiazek, Supervisor of the Youth Social Services Unit. “However, we also know that part of our goal is to provide intervention education before we get to enforcement.”

Knowledge is power, and parents who log on to learn will play an important role in keeping their kids drug free. For more information on the program visit thepowerofchoice.info.

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