It’s important we do more than simply ask our youth to “just say no,” but that we also look at “why.” What makes the difference between the child who passes on pills at a party, and the child who doesn’t? How can we encourage and facilitate the resilience of our young people?
Both national and Ohio research suggests that prevention interventions can have a positive impact on both behavioral health outcomes such as substance abuse and academic outcomes such as school attendance, school discipline and grades. By encouraging increased self-efficacy and self-esteem, good decision making skills, strong mental health and sound strategies to cope with emotions like anger, sadness and stress, we can arm our most vulnerable youth with skills and strategies to put their drug prevention knowledge into practice.
Building Youth Resiliency is an important part of Ohio’s youth drug prevention initiative, “Start Talking: Building a Drug-Free Future.”