In July, seven Appalachian Youth to Youth members attended the Southern States Conference in Charlotte, hosted by Youth to Youth International. There, these seven youth built their knowledge and skills around substance use prevention. In addition, they met with youth groups from five other Western North Carolina counties to begin planning a regional teen prevention summit. Appalachian Youth to Youth will take leadership roles at the “OWN It – the Power of YOUth Summit” to take place November 2-4 at Kanuga Conference Center in Henderson County.
Later in July Appalachian Youth to Youth members led a successful Sizzlin’ Summer Series event on the Burnsville Town Square. Appalachian Youth to Youth members painted children’s faces, led rock painting activities, and played games with families. Through this community activity, the youth were able to provide a wholesome event for the entire family – important because community connection and quality family time are protective factors that help keep young people from experimenting with risky behaviors like substance use.
Appalachian Youth to Youth started back in the schools the week of September 10 in the middle schools of Yancey and Mitchell Counties, and the school year is off to a great start! To learn more about Youth to Youth or to receive additional information, please visit www.appyouth2youth.org.