Drug-Free Contest Invites Students To Submit Drawings, Poems

Palm Beach Post/August 26, 2001

The National Drug-Free Marshals Program, which aims to educate preteens about the dangers of drug use, is sponsoring its annual Back- to-School Art Contest open to children 14 and under throughout Florida. The theme of this year's art contest is "How I Can Create a Drug-Free Community." The contest invites drawings, poems and essays.

According to the National Clearinghouse of Drugs and Alcohol Information, every day in the United States, 500 children between the ages of 10 and 14 begin using illegal drugs and 1,000 children between 10 and 14 begin using alcohol.

The Church of Scientology, founded by L. Ron Hubbard, began efforts to promote its anti-drug education campaign in Los Angeles where 200 kids were sworn in as "Drug-Free Marshals" in April 1993.

The campaign gained support from corporate sponsors such as McDonald's and Arby's restaurants and organizations including Narconon International, the Boys and Girls Clubs and several government agencies.

In addition to art contests, the program sponsors community activities including beach and park cleanup campaigns, leadership contests, lectures, charity drives, mural contests and essay contests nationwide.

Participants of the program must sign this pledge:

As a Drug-Free Marshal I pledge to lead the way by:

1. Living a drug-free life.
2. Showing my friends that a drug-free life is more fun.
3. Helping my fellow Drug-Free Marshals.
4. Learning more about how drugs really harm people.
5. Telling people the truth about the harmful effects of drugs.
6. Helping my family and friends be drug-free.
7. Setting a good example to all children by leading the way to a Drug-Free USA.


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