PHILIPSBURG – The Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, through, the Inspectorate of Culture, Youth and Sport, has partnered with the St. Maarten Lions Club, through its Junior Club, the St. Maarten Leo Club, to embark on a Drug and Alcohol awareness campaign, with its main objective to curb the use and abuse of drugs and alcohol use among the youth.
This initiative came about through recent findings within the Ministry of Education that the number of reports of drug and alcohol use among minors was increasing instead of decreasing. Reports indicate that younger students in the primary schools are also indulging in drugs and alcohol.
On Monday evening, March 20, the first information session was held where 10 of the 13 entities invited were present, as well as other members of the community. “All persons present engaged in the realities of what we are faced with today, globally as well as locally,” a statement said.
All persons present were also educated on the use of lyrics in music used to promote drug and alcohol use and violence. They were also enlightened on the “street talk” used amongst the youth to promote the aforementioned.
It is the intention to have many more informative sessions where “we will reach out to the youth organizations, school boards, faculty and students of our schools (primary and secondary level), as well as the parents and guardians of our youth, to further inform, educate and eradicate it among our youth,” the release continued.
At the end of the evening, all attendees signed a pledge of commitment to collaborate in this awareness campaign. The Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport and the St. Maarten Lions Club thanked all persons for attending the information session, and “we look forward to all and more participating in this fight.”
“We request that the entire community come out to these sessions when announced as we join hands and together fight this war on drug and alcohol use and abuse among our youth,” the release concluded.