Sanford hosts addiction presentation

Pictured following a presentation on drugs, drug abuse and addiction at Sanford High School are, in front, Pharmacist Joseph Valdez and in back from left, Rolling Church Ministries Pastor Danny Fox, newspaper columnist Amarah, Pastor Charlie Fox, Sanford student Clay Canty and student Meagan Paine. The students are members of FCCLA involved in a project on drug prevention. Fellow student Mackenzie Peterson is not pictured./Photo by Sylvia Lobato

SANFORD — Students involved in Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) Wednesday hosted juniors and seniors at Sanford High School in a presentation regarding drugs and their effects on family and community life.

Arranged in cooperation with La Jara pharmacist Joseph Valdez, the program featured Amarah, author of “Kids Like Me,” a weekly column in The Valley Courier emphasizing the problems addiction creates for young people and families where addiction is prevalent.

Accompanied by Charlie and Danny Fox, pastors and founders of The Rolling Church Ministries, Amarah spoke softly about her life and how her mother’s addiction created issues that last to this day.

Amarah’s grandmother, who did not want to be named, is her granddaughter’s support system and said the soft-spoken girl has suffered in school and society due to family damage.

One sign the students could watch for in determining if a peer needs help is the signs of neglect, dirty or worn clothing, light attire in the winter and inability to ask for help.

The Foxes pointed out that addicts have their own culture and often can recognize one another without a spoken word.

Their ministry covers human trafficking intervention, jail ministry and addiction assistance.

Amarah as a victim of parental addiction could have given in to it or taken another path. She uses her God-given artistic and writing ability to reach others. Her grandmother is proud she chose the latter.

Excited about the Lady Indians’ trip to the state basketball tournaments, the students who listened walked out of the Sanford gym with materials in hand and a quiet tone of voice.

Meagan Paine and Clay Canty, FCCLA officers at Sargent, had questions and comments after the presentation was over and fellow member Mackenzie Peterson was already headed to the tournaments.

Amarah asked if she could talk later with the parents, and that is in the works.

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