Red Ribbon: Drug Free Looks Like Me

Red Ribbon: Drug Free Looks Like Me

Kaya Whittaker, Journalist

The National Family Partnership (NFP) is a nonprofit organization with the goal of preventing drug abuse and educating students about drug abuse. Established in 1980, NFP has touched the lives of millions of people, young and old, across the world. Today, it’s a national leader in drug prevention education & advocacy. 

The most famous way NFP raises awareness of drug prevention is by sponsoring the annual Red Ribbon Campaign. The red ribbon symbol came about in response to the murder of DEA Agent Enrique Camarena. People wore red ribbons as a symbol of their dedication to raise awareness of the destruction caused by drugs. The first Red Ribbon Celebration was sponsored by the NFP in 1988. Since then, the campaign has become one to remember throughout the years.

“I still remember having Red Ribbon Week when I went to Ripon High,” said Mrs. Pendleton. “The lessons of the dangers of drugs have stuck with me ever since.”

Because of the annuality of the campaign, its lessons have been ingrained in the minds of today’s youth. Anyone in the city of Ripon has at least heard of the Red Ribbon Campaign if they haven’t worn the famous red band. This yearly reminder of the amount of destruction drugs can cause to children and adults alike makes people think twice about taking narcotics. But, already drug-free people can help, too.

“The biggest impact we have made as an organization is spreading the important message that each person can do something about the drug problem,” said Peggy Sapp, president of the National Family Partnership.

Most people think that as long as they aren’t doing any drugs, they aren’t contributing to the drug problem. They would be wrong. If your friend is taking drugs with your knowledge and you don’t try to stop them, you’re contributing. Helping drug prevention shouldn’t stop at not directly being involved. People should go out of their way to stop others from directly being involved. The more who do that, the less of a problem drugs in youth are.

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