THY at Cross Schools Address Stress During Exams Week

December 14th-December 16th, 2020

Teens for Healthy Youth (THY) at Cross Schools launched a three-day stress project to help their peers manage stress during exams week. On the first day of the project, THY members greeted their peers in the carpool lines with posters they designed that had positive messages.  They also played festive music for the students and individually offered encouragement to their classmates.  The theme of the day was, “You’ve Got This!”  On the second day, THY invited pups to join them for “PAWS and Take a Breath”.  As students arrived at school,  the pets were there to interact with the students and help them destress before their exams. On the third day, THY launched “MINT to Succeed and EncourageMINT”.  THY distributed THY Stress Fact Cards to students, parents, faculty, and staff as they arrived at school.  THY reminded all at Cross Schools to stay positive and look for healthy ways to manage stress, rather than defaulting to unhealthy ways, like using drugs or alcohol.  THY distributed over 400 stress fact cards and reached over 400 students in grades K-12 as well as parents, faculty, and staff members of Cross Schools.  THY at Cross Schools is pleased with the success of their first project and look forward to working on more projects in their inaugural year to promote positive teen health.

LCAHY Board Member Distributes Signage During COVID-19: Make Them Show Their Face

December 2020

David Martin, Business Sector representative of the LowCountry Alliance for Healthy Youth Board, is posting signage at local establishments that serve and sell alcohol during COVID-19. The signage encourages employees to ask customers to remove their masks and show their faces when purchasing alcohol.  David Martin, the owner of a local grocery store that sells alcohol, says it is very important to remind businesses that serve and sell alcohol to ask individuals to remove their masks when checking IDs to prevent youth from using fake IDs to purchase alcohol.  This is especially important for establishments that provide alcohol to customers via curbside pickup during COVID-19.  During the holidays, David Martin and his youth employees reached out to businesses in the Coligny area of Hilton Head, asking them to post “Show Your Face” signage.  Next month, David plans to reach out to additional restaurants and convenience stores on the south end of Hilton Head, a popular area for tourists and youth.  His goal is to have fifty establishments post signage at their place of business by the end of January 2021.  Furthermore, David Martin plans to work with LCAHY board members to reach key areas in Bluffton.  David Martin acknowledges that it is essential for LCAHY to work with local businesses to prevent and reduce youth access to alcohol and create community-wide change.

LCAHY and THY Participate in Reverse Christmas Parade in Bluffton, SC

December 5th, 2020

The LowCountry Alliance for Healthy Youth (LCAHY) and their youth coalition, Teens for Healthy Youth (THY), participated in the Reverse Bluffton Christmas Parade. LCAHY Board member, Tia Campanella, and THY member, Jillian Campanella, took part in the parade to create awareness for LCAHY and THY.  The LCAHY and THY banners that contain the coalition’s and youth coalition’s vision statement was displayed during the parade so individuals driving by could learn more about the organizations. Over 150 local residents drove through the parade. This event was streamed live by the Town of Bluffton on their Facebook page and featured in other local news.  The Town of Bluffton reported that there were over 7,600 views of the parade on their Facebook page. To view the parade visit https://fb.watch/2ek2DU64-i/.  To LCAHY and THY featured in the parade go to the Bluffton Today Newspaper at https://www.blufftontoday.com/story/news/2020/12/07/bluffton-celebrates-holidays-reverse-parade/3856892001/.  LCAHY and THY first took part in the Christmas parade last year, when THY served as the Grand Co-Marshals of the event. LCAHY plans to participate yearly in the parade to create awareness for their efforts to promote positive youth development.

Town of Bluffton Supports Smoke-Free and Vape-Free Awareness Month

November 10th, 2020

The Town of Bluffton, South Carolina declared November 2020 Smoke-Free and Vape-Free Awareness Month.  The Proclamation, issued by the Bluffton Mayor and the Town Council, acknowledges that the US Surgeon General, American Heart Association, American Lung Association, and American Cancer Association warned that vaping poses a serious public health risk to young people and that e-cigarette use among teens has become increasingly common among all adolescent demographic groups. The Mayor encouraged community members to support youth in making positive decisions and to take appropriate measures to prevent smoking and vaping. The town was prompted to issue the Proclamation by the LowCountry Alliance for Healthy Youth (LCAHY).  In 2019, Mayor Sulka was interviewed in a youtube video by Teens for Healthy Youth at May River about the dangers of e-cigarettes.  Through her conversation with THY members and their advisor, the Mayor developed an awareness about this public health issue. Soon after, the Mayor and Town Council of Bluffton approved the inclusion of vaping in their Smoking Ordinance.  In an interview with WTOC, Mayor Sulka tributes the local ordinance change to LCAHY creating an awareness of this public health issue. The Town of Bluffton has been a champion of LCAHY and THY and has worked with LCAHY and THY to promote positive youth development.

https://www.wtoc.com/2019/07/10/bluffton-town-council-one-step-closer-adding-e-cigarettes-vapes-no-smoking-ordinance/

THY Create A THY Recruitment Video During COVID-19

November 16th, 2020

Teens for Healthy Youth (THY) at Bluffton High, Hilton Head Christian Academy, Hilton Head Preparatory, and May River High collaborated with Beaufort County Schools Coordinator of Media Productions, Ron Lopes, to produce a video to encourage teens to join THY.   During COVID-19, many school activities have been limited or canceled, such as open houses and club fairs. The youth decided it was necessary to develop a video so they could recruit teens learning from home, via a hybrid model, or face-to-face.  The students will share their video through the schools’ social media platforms, websites, and parent and student newsletters.  The THY members in the video encouraged their peers to join THY to make a difference in their school community, promote positive teen health, earn service hours, build a unique resume, and develop job skills. They also made their peers aware that THY Members are eligible for youth recognition awards, such as the LowCountry Alliance for Healthy Youth (LCAHY) Senior Award and internship positions with LCAHY.  Teens for Healthy Youth are dedicated to promoting positive teen health and substance use prevention in their school community and will continue to look for innovative ways to reach out to their peers during COVID-19.  

Stress Can Be Scary

October 29-30th, 2020

Teens for Healthy Youth (THY) at Hilton Head Island Prep School (HHP) launched a project called “Stress Can Be Scary”.  The group distributed festive Halloween cards that read, “Stress Can Be Scary. Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help” with candy to 220 of their peers in the upper school.  THY at HHP recognized that the circumstances produced by COVID-19 have brought about additional stressors and that can lead to substance use, anxiety, depression, and suicide ideation which are on the rise nationwide. The teens wanted their peers to know they care about the mental health of their peers and that they can seek support from school leaders if they are facing challenges dealing with stress. Teens for Healthy Youth plan to focus on stress throughout the year and see it has a very pertinent teen health issue.

Hilton Head Christian Academy THY Takeover: Managing Stress through COVID-19

October 26-30, 2020

Teens for Healthy Youth (THY) members at Hilton Head Christian Academy (HHCA) created videos for the HHCA Instagram page to share ways to help their peers cope with stress in a positive way. The teens acknowledge that during COVID-19, individuals may experience more stress that can lead to substance use, anxiety, depression, and suicide ideation which are increasing across the United States. They wanted to ensure that their peers have healthy coping strategies to manage their stress.  HHCA THY plans to address teen health issues during COVID-19 and provide peer-to-peer education.  Select the youtube links below to watch the videos produced by THY HHCA.

THY Assist with Rx Take Back Day

October 24th, 2020

LowCountry Alliance for Healthy Youth (LCAHY) and the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office worked together during Rx Take Back Day.  The event was held at the Beaufort County Government building in Bluffton, SC. Community members returned their unused medications to law enforcement at the drop-off site. Meanwhile, Teens for Healthy Youth members and their advisors distributed LCAHY’s Rx Fact Cards, Medication Safety Checklist, and the THY informational brochure.  LCAHY’s Rx Fact card listed local year-long drop off locations. THY and BCSO reported 60 cars dropped off medications during the event and 35.8 pounds of medications were collected. Rx Take Back day is a strategy within LCAHY’s 12-Month Action Plan, which includes reducing youth access to medicines not prescribed to them.  LCAHY and BCSO look forward to working together during future Take Back Day events.

LCAHY Recognizes THY for Promoting Positive Teen Health Year-Round & During COVID-19

October 5th, 2020

The LowCountry Alliance for Healthy Youth (LCAHY) applauded Teens for Healthy Youth (THY) for their leadership, community service, peer to peer education, advocacy, and positive youth development during a virtual LCAHY Board meeting.   LCAHY’s Chair, Wendy Cummings, acknowledged the youths’ determination to promote positive youth health even during the challenging times of COVID-19 and encouraged the youth to continue their efforts during the school year.  THY representatives from each of the five area schools including Bluffton High School, Hilton Head Christian Academy, Hilton Head High School, Hilton Head Prep, and May River High School, participated in the Zoom meeting and showcased their peer to peer education projects implemented during SAMSHA’s National Prevention Week May 2020.   In a video message, Kylie Nelson, a youth representative on the LCAHY Board and President of THY at May River, encouraged the LCAHY Board and community members to learn more about THY’s year-long efforts by reading LCAHY’s e-news alert at https://mailchi.mp/f27dd8eae9be/thy-promote-positive-teen-health-year-round-during-covid-19.  To learn more about THY visit LCAHY’s website at http://www.lcahealthyyouth.com/youth-coalition/.

THY Leader Develops Infographics to Discourage Impaired Driving

2018

In 2018, Adelynn Helms, President of Teens for Healthy Youth (THY) at Bluffton High and youth representative on the LowCountry Alliance for Healthy Youth Board, created two infographics to discourage drunk, drugged, and distracted driving during the Winter Holiday Season and Summer Break.  These infographics were featured in local newspapers and magazines. The holiday message was also attached to candy canes and passed out by Teens for Healthy Youth Members to shoppers at Tanger Outlet and to students at Bluffton High School.  This message is especially important in South Carolina which ranks third in the nation for drunk driving.   Annually, LCAHY updates its Winter and Summer Impaired Driving Campaign and continues to educate the community on the risks posed by drunk, drugged, and distracted driving through local media, e-news alerts, and the coalition website. This is significant because the coalition was formed in response to numerous alcohol-related tragedies involving youth in the communities of Bluffton and Hilton Head Island. To learn more visit LCAHY’s website at http://lcahealthyyouth.com/news/success-stories/3d-holiday-campaign/ or https://mailchi.mp/d6ead5fa35a8/l

3D Holiday Driving Impaired Message Designed by Adelyn Helms 2018.

LCAHY Summer Impaired Driving Campaign Message Designed in 2018 by Adelyn Helms, THY President Bluffton High School.