By: Maya Afif
Red Ribbon Week is a week where awareness is spread about the negative effects of drug use by the STARS club at our school. Many schools hold a spirit week for Red Ribbon Week with different meanings behind the ways they dress up. This year at Salisbury, the week was celebrated at our school from Nov. 15-19. On Monday, the theme was pajama day (wake up drug-free); Tuesday was hippie day (peace out to drugs); Wednesday was crazy hair/clothing day (doing drugs is crazy); Thursday was to wear black (black out drugs); Friday was to wear red (red alert – don’t do drugs).
Many people participated in this spirit week. STARS members decorated teachers’ doors and most dressed up. The advisor of the STARS club, Ms. Cherry, who is also a Spanish teacher, added something else as a part of this week for everyone to have fun.
On the last day of the week, which was Friday, red ribbons were placed in hidden areas all around the school. Any student could try and find a ribbon. If a student found a ribbon, they would get a prize from Ms. Cherry. The ribbons have a sentence on each of them stating, “I pledge to be drug-free.”
STARS club is the club that planned out Red Ribbon Week for our school. However, another organization at other local schools called SADD also celebrates this week as well. So, what is the difference between SADD and STARS?
Ms. Cherry stated, “Essentially, there is no difference between the two. SADD stands for Students Against Distracted Driving and STARs stands for Students Taking Active Roles. The goals are the same – being against drug use and distracted/impaired driving. The reason STARs has its name is because 2 years ago, SADD National decided to make each SADD club (that uses its name) pay a fee for each club member without the club really receiving much in return. A lot of high schools in the Lehigh Valley decided to change their name to STARs so we wouldn’t have to pay the unnecessary yearly fee. We’re even designing a club t-shirt for all schools to wear together!”
The national Red Ribbon Week is actually Oct. 23-31. Though it was in October, STARS did the week later in November. Why did STARS plan out Red Ribbon Week later even though the national week for it was in October?
Ms. Cherry had also added along with her other response, “The reason we had Red Ribbon Week later was because we focused on National Teen Driving Safety Week for our October activity. We try to do 1 activity per month. Since Red Ribbon Week is important too, we decided to have it in November. We’ll probably switch the timing for the two activities next year so we participate during Red Ribbon Week alongside all other high schools!”
Many students had also thought Red Ribbon Week was something enjoyable to participate in. A freshman who attends here at Salisbury High School, Izabella Muñoz, shared her opinions on the week. “I liked Red Ribbon week. It was nice having something to participate in throughout the week.”
Another freshman, Emily Morris, shared her thoughts. “It was so fun to participate in, especially for a good cause!”
The STARS club hopes that the excitement about Red Ribbon Week, including dressing up and hunting for ribbons, brings awareness to everyone about the terrible effects of drug use. Their goal is also to point out how Salisbury is a drug-free place.