Group Size: 10-50
Estimated Time: 45 minutes
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Materials: try to find the below articles and have enough photocopied to give out to the group
Trigger: Give kids this article about thelockers.net to read:
http://www.njjewishnews.com/njjn.com/120904/njinschool.html (you may not find it but it's a very important issue so try and figure something out to replace it)
This article talks about how parents in ny-nj yeshiva schools thought that drugs was not a problem and didn't want to believe it was happening in their schools, but thelockers.net is showing them otherwise.
Points to discuss with kids:
-Do you think drugs, alcohol and substance abuse are problems in your schools?
-Do the teachers, parents know about it, care about it?
-Is it better to ignore what is happening or to deal with it?
-How do we deal with it? Is thelockers.net a good option? Is it good/bad that kids have this forum? What else can be done? How do we change the drug culture in the schools?
The point is to empower the kids and provide a non-threatening segue into talking about this stuff.
This way we can address the denial in almost all schools that this stuff is happening, raise awareness and get the kids to care. The parents aren't doing stuff about this - it's up to you guys to take back the schools! What programs should there be in your schools to deal with this? (You could also get into problems in schools in general - lack of spirituality, davening, etc, getting kids to step up to fix the problems).
Role playing. Have scenarios, such as the ones outlines in the Orthodox Caucus website.
http://www.ocweb.org/index.php/knowledgebase/kbtemp/cat/Substance%20Abuse/ (this should be easier to find)
We'd set it up like we had it in the quest session. 2 kids at the front of the room, if anyone else would do something different they go up and stand behind the person role playing and they can either take his or her place or say what they would do.
Role playing should include scenarios on what you would do if your friend approached you and said he had taken drugs yesterday, you're at a house where people start doing drugs, and you see signs your friend has an eating disorder. Stuff to bring up: Do you stay friends with that person, how do u try and help them, do u go to the authorities or is that snitching.....etc.
You should open up to discussion what the other kids would have done, if anyone has been in this situation before and what they did.
The day before we have this sicha we would ask the kids to think of or write down anonymously anything they want to know about drugs or any questions, and now we would read some of the questions and then discuss them. In an open forum, thelockers.net type style.
Suitable for Shabbat