The upcoming year, 2016, is a special one for They're Our Kids -- it's our 10th anniversary!
We began as the 2006 Leadership Hendricks County group project for Jan Currier, myself (Eric Ivie), Gus Pearcy and Richard Sutton, and the first, very rudimentary, version of TOK went online in November of that year.
TOK has been revised, updated, and expanded countless times since Version 1.0 hit the Internet in 2006, and as we close the door on 2015, we celebrate 137,987 page views and 38,654 unique visitors to the website over the past year! Woo hoo!
This blog, The Village, is the primary source of those page views and unique visitors, and in an effort to determine what information Villagers are most interested in, I investigated which blog posts in 2015 drew the most interest.
Here's how it shook out:
We have a serious drug problem in Hendricks County in the form of heroin, but heroin is not the only drug that's out there. As we continue the conversation about drug abuse in our community and what we can do about it, it's important to educate ourselves about the drugs that OUR KIDS are exposed to.
We started with learning about heroin last week.
Now, let's learn about marijuana.
Obviously, Americans have differing opinions about the legality of marijuana and the actual harm done by it. This post is not designed to argue one viewpoint or another. It's to educate parents who presumably do not want their kids using marijuana for health, legal and/or moral reasons.
***WARNING: Graphic images ahead.***
We have established that there is a serious heroin problem in Hendricks County, and we've continued the conversation to learn why people use heroin, who uses it, and our need to eliminate the stigma of drug addiction.
Now let's educate ourselves about drugs.
I've added a page to They're Our Kids with lots of resources about alcohol and drug addiction, prevention, treatment and recovery. Click here to check it out. It's an ongoing work-in-progress, so feel free to contact me about anything you'd like to see added to the page.
Now I'd like to provide some information that I hope Villagers find helpful about individual drugs. I'll start with heroin and work my way through other common drugs in future blog posts.
***WARNING: Graphic images ahead.***
The Plainfield Community School Corporation and Into the Light Recovery hosted a community forum on October 28 called "Continuing the Conversation: Prevention, Action and Hope" which was about saving OUR KIDS from heroin and other drugs.
This was a perfectly-timed forum right on the heels of the Steered Straight, Inc. presentation in Danville last week that prompted me to write a blog post, alerting Villagers that we have a serious heroin problem in Hendricks County.
(On a side note, that blog post went "viral" -- at least by They're Our Kids standards -- garnering 9,412 unique page views as of this posting! Thank you SO MUCH, Villagers, for spreading the word about this incredibly important topic!)
After attending the "Continuing the Conversation" forum in Plainfield, I want to offer a few general impressions of the event, as well as highlight some of the things that especially caught my attention.
On October 20, Michael DeLeon from the not-for-profit Steered Straight, Inc. out of New Jersey came to Danville to discuss the drug epidemic that is sweeping our nation and leaving no stone -- or small community -- unturned in its wake.
During his 90-minute presentation to parents at West Bridge Church, Mr. DeLeon sought to bring awareness to the drug problem by way of his perspective as a recovering addict and violent felony offender who served more than a decade in prison in New Jersey.
Since I have 15 years of past experience as a probation officer -- 12 of those years were here in Hendricks County -- I want to reinforce some points that Mr. DeLeon made in his presentation and offer my own local perspective, lest his message be lost on those who dismiss it based on his criminal history or the fact that he doesn't live here.
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