On January 30, 2014, Sequoia Rent, Young Health Program Coordinator and Jayla Cannon attended the Health Rocks Youth Ambassador Summit at 4-H National Conference Center in DC. The summit was part of the 4th annual National Drug Facts Week which took place from January 27–February 2, 2014. The week-long event, launched in 2010 by NIDA, provides an opportunity for teens to shatter myths about drugs and drug abuse. In community and school events all over America, teens and experts come together for an honest conversation about how drugs affect the brain, body and behavior. Students also have the opportunity to ask scientists questions about drugs, or discuss NIDA materials designed for teens.
4-H partnered with NIDA and presented the Health Rocks! Youth Ambassador Summit, which exposed youth leaders participating in Health Rocks! to top notch experts in their field,” said Jennifer Sirangelo, National 4-H Council President & CEO. “To date, the Health Rocks! program has impacted more than 400,000 youth since implementation 15 years ago.
As part of the celebration, David Mineta, deputy director of Demand Reduction for the Office of National Drug Control Policy, served as keynote speaker. Lisa Lauxman, director, Division Youth & 4-H at National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA, also took part in the ceremony along with staff from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Youth representatives from eight states who have implemented the Health Rocks! program presented on substance abuse issues most affecting their community including our very own Jayla Cannon. The event allowed youth to gain more insight about the effects of substance abuse to further assist their local program implementation.