On Sept. 24 and 25, the annual Youth Leadership Conference took place at the Deer Creek Lodge and Conference Center. This conference is sponsored by the Fayette County Prevention Coalition through grant funding.
Local youth work on substance use prevention education and learn ways to take prevention into their community. Each youth in attendance participated in creating a presentation on prevention awareness. They also participated in several activities that focused on healthy lifestyle, as well as team building and leadership skills.
During the conference, Godwin Apaliyah, of the OSU Extension Office, delivered the presentation on “Real Color,” which is a personality assessment for youth. This was both fun and informative and helped to teach the participants why they may have communication difficulties with others and how to bridge those barriers. It also helped them to understand how their personality color could influence decision-making. Everyone in attendance was completely engaged in this activity.
The conference was also joined by Fayette County Sheriff’s Office deputies Montana Coe and Brian Crooks. These two local law officers were able to take lead on a scavenger hunt. Two groups were sent out to forage natural objects in the area of Deer Creek and through a collaboration of cooperation and determination each group was able to complete the activity successfully.
Activities that help provide coping skills are always included in the Youth Leadership Conference, and this year there was a local fitness trainer, Trey Tompkins, leading the group in chair yoga on Sunday morning. This activity was a great way to get those sleepy bodies up and at ‘em. It is also a great stress reducer and something the group can put into practice any time they feel stressed.
A special thanks goes out to the prize sponsors: Nick Epifano – McDonald’s, Roller Haven Family Fun Center and LeElla Lanes. Each donated prizes and coupons for the event so that every participant went home with something unexpected.
Prevention isn’t just something that is done once a year. Currently, the coalition has meetings scheduled at the Washington Court House Carnegie Library on Monday, Oct. 17 and Monday, Oct. 24 from 4-6 p.m. The coalition also has a skating party scheduled at the Roller Haven on Monday, Oct. 31 from 6-8 p.m.
The coalition began teaching prevention at the Head Start in Washington C.H. and Jeffersonville on Monday, Oct. 10. The curriculum is Generation RX, a program that can be utilized at the pre-K level and includes family participation assignments. These were met with great feedback last year and the coalition is pleased to continue the program this year.
For more information on the Fayette County Prevention Coalition or any Youth Prevention activities, please contact Gwen Hesson or Tina Scharenberg at 740-335-7282.