Danville Express

Newsfront - March 2, 2007

Hero fest to celebrate clean living

Teens to share the power of living free from drugs, alcohol and tobacco

by Jordan M. Doronila

Teenagers may find inspiration at the Youth to Youth Middle School Conference next week by sharing, learning and laughing together.

The San Ramon Valley Community Against Substance Abuse will be holding its 13th annual Y2Y Conference at Charlotte Wood Middle School in Danville on March 10. This year's theme is "Heros. The Power is Yours!" with high school leaders - heros - whose lives are successful and who believe in the power of being free from drugs, alcohol and tobacco.

"It's fabulous," said Terry Koehne, district spokesman. "It's peer driven. Kids get energized by other kids."

The all-day event takes place from 8 a.m.-10 p.m., and is open to all sixth, seventh and eighth-grade students. More than 20 workshops will be offered throughout the day by the high school leaders, and the day will end with a dance.

Approximately 400 middle and high school students will be attending. More than 80 high school students from Danville, Alamo and San Ramon will be working at the conference. Also, school administrators, community and service groups, and law enforcement agencies will be attending.

The conference is co-sponsored by the Pack Foundation, the San Ramon Valley Unified School District, the Town of Danville, the city of San Ramon and Discovery Counseling Center.

"It's a way for kids to get exposed to extremely healthy alternatives," Koehne said. "They attend workshops. They do small groups. They do skits."

"(It's) a full day of education and healthy fun," he added.

Youth to Youth started in 1995. It was one of the pioneers in youth driven, "no-use" message and drug prevention programming at a time when other programs were supporting "responsible use." Since 1982, three U.S. presidents, including current President Bush, have recognized the conference's achievements.

Registration forms are available at all the middle schools or online at srvcasa.org. The cost is $30 through March 3, and $40 after that date or at the door. For more information call CASA Project Director Kimberly Gallagher at 838-0663.

Contact Jordan M. Doronila at jdoronila@DanvilleWeekly.com

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