<strong>Staying Safe by Staying Busy this Summer</strong>

Staying Safe by Staying Busy this Summer

Summertime is full of new opportunities, increased physical activities, and options for social events. With Summer Break 2024 in full swing comes the need to be confident and resilient in our decision to stay drug-free. Unfortunately, some teens may take advantage of the downtime to begin experimenting with alcohol and other drugs. Research shows that first-time use of these substances peaks among teens in June and July. So, how can we keep teens safe this summer? Keeping teens busy! Here are a few tips to keep teens active:

  1. Summer Job: Working and earning money helps teens gain confidence, make new friends, and expand their social groups. The responsibility of maintaining a job helps teens develop a sense of responsibility and can make a huge difference in maturity and logical decision-making.
  2. Volunteer Work: Providing help for others is fulfilling and rewarding in more ways than one. Food banks, animal shelters, local parks, and Habitat for Humanity are just a few to consider in the volunteering journey. Volunteer Match is a website featuring volunteer opportunities all across the country.
  3. Organized activities: Athletic camps, academic camps, and extracurricular clubs have many benefits. They keep teens busy while building and fostering social and leadership skills, promoting friendships, boosting confidence and self-esteem, and encouraging enjoyment. Find the things they love.
  4. Family time: Vacations, family dinners, weekend getaways, shopping trips, sporting events, or game nights are ways to bond with teens and create core memories. These activities provide both quality time and structure for long summer days.

Teenagers who share that they are “frequently bored” increase their likelihood of getting drunk, using illegal drugs, and smoking by 50%, according to a study by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse. Adults are the first line of defense in reducing the chances that teens will take their first drink or use other substances. Agreeing on expectations, setting the right example, engaging in open dialogue about alcohol and drug use and their dangerous consequences, and promoting a busy lifestyle for them are all critical in helping to maintain drug-free lifestyles.

Drug Free Clubs of America is on a mission to reduce the impacts of drug use on youth. Across the nation, drug and alcohol use is on the rise among teens. We provide students with practical tools and techniques to navigate peer pressure and choose a healthy lifestyle. Partnering with schools and communities, we offer preventative programming to meet students where they are. Through randomized drug testing, educational resources, a positive outlet, and a supportive community, we are changing school cultures and reducing alcohol, marijuana, vaping, and other detrimental activities among our members and the entire school body. Drug Free Clubs of America has over as over 7,000 active student and faculty/staff members and Clubs in over 50 schools in Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, and California.

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