WHY WE NEED THIS
Schools and community partners lack clear collaboration around prevention efforts, and often do not engage the students in planning. As a result, students receive many mixed messages from their families, communities and the media, and don’t always make informed choices around substance use.
Local research revealed that of Franklin County teens:
- 44% say they feel like they do not matter to other people;
- 22% report being bullied within the past 30 days;
- 31% drank alcohol and 20% drove with a drinking driver within the past 30 days.
HOW IT WORKS
Students in Franklin County high schools come together for a week-long training in the summer where they build trust, self confidence, and skills in promoting prevention and wellness. During this week youth and adults work together to guide, support, and educate participants. While at Teen Institute, students create a plan to promote wellness at school, where they receive support from community organizations and Teen Institute advisors.
United Way staff played a vital role in bringing community partners together while coordinating and providing leadership for Teen Institute. United Way of Northwest Vermont continues to provide both financial and staff support.