Classic SADD Chapter Activities to Raise Awareness for Important Issues
Chain of Life
The Chain of Life is a great activity to start off the school year. Start by providing everyone with a piece of paper during lunch or homeroom is generally a good time. Invite each student and staff member to sign his or her name on the paper. Your SADD members then loop every piece together, making an interlocking chain with the links.
Customize the activity to your school. Divide the chain into colors by each class and hold a competition to see who can achieve 100% participation. If you don’t challenge the individual classes, challenge the entire school for 100% participation. Keep a record and inform everyone by daily announcement indicating how close you are to 100%.
Class slogans can also be incorporated in the chain, or each person can glue a picture of himself or herself onto the inside of the chain. Hang the chain in a prominent place in the school with a sign that says, “Don’t break the “Chain of Life.”
At the culmination of this activity, you may choose to leave the chain up for a longer period or bring it out for special at-risk seasons, such as Christmas, New Year’s Eve, prom, and graduation, to remind everyone not to break the chain during the upcoming season. New signs and slogans may be added to reference the season. In this way, the chain serves to reinforce the idea of caring, responsibility and making good decisions.
Many schools have found this activity to be so effective that they have expanded the “Chain of Life” to the middle school and also to the community. Invite the mayor, selectmen, city councilors, school committee members, parents, and community members to come to a central location, town hall, local park, or mall to sign a link and connect it to the chain. You can also do this activity as part of your safe summer campaign to reinforce the need to have the entire community involved in the effort to end underage drinking.
Friends For Life
Friends caring for friends is the focus of the Friends for Life campaign. At the center of the campaign is the SADD friendship bracelet. The following message can be attached to each bracelet or written on an accompanying card.
I’m giving this very special gift to you —
because you are my friend and I am yours.
Whenever you are tempted
to do something destructive,
look at this gift — and think of me.
You’ll know I care about you.
And you’ll know the right thing to do.
Wear this symbol of our friendship
and remember to make the right choice.
We are “Friends for Life.”
SADD chapters can sell the bracelets to students as a fundraiser for teens to give to their friends or your chapter can provide them free. Start by publicizing the event in a way that gets the students interested and involved. You may want to run a weeklong campaign with posters, contests, announcements on the PA, and other events that stress the importance of making good decisions and how each decision you and your peers make affects each other.
At the culmination of the events, hold a “Friends Dance.” The concept is to remind your friends and peers that they have the power to influence each other in a positive way.
The SADD “Friends for Life” bracelet is more than a symbol: it is a constant reminder of the bond friends share. Giving and wearing the friendship bracelet can help students focus on what is truly important in life: caring for each other. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all students in your school wore friendship bracelets showing someone cares for them and wants them to be safe?
SADD friendship bracelets are available from the SADD Store.
Gift of a Lifetime
Holidays are a time for giving and for telling the people close to us how much they mean to us. SADD encourages everyone to give the greatest gift of all – a commitment to be safe and drug-free during the holidays. With the SADD Gift of a Lifetime card, shown here, individuals can make promises to each other to celebrate safely and avoid tragedy during the holidays. Through the message of the Gift of a Lifetime card, teenagers promise to party substance-free during the winter and New Year’s holidays. They also make a commitment to their friends and loved ones that they will not endanger their lives by riding with impaired drivers.
Parents and family members who are of legal drinking age promise not to drive while under the influence and not to ride with impaired drivers.
SADD strongly suggests that your chapter create visible symbols of this commitment — pins decorated with gold braid or other holiday colored cord. Whoever gives the gift also promises to wear the matching pin. In this way, each demonstrates a pledge to keep the season happy by using the power of caring and good judgment during holiday celebrations.
To make your own cards, you may photocopy the Gift of a Lifetime card pictured. If you decide to design your own card, please do not change the message. This card reflects SADD’s commitment to a “No Use” message to teens regarding alcohol and other drugs.
If your card is printed the same size as shown, it will fit into a Baronial #53⁄4 envelope, which is 43⁄8 x 53⁄4.
|DearThis gift is a symbol of my respect for you and represents our promise to each other.I will wear my pin to show my commitment to you that I will not endanger my life during this
holiday season by drinking or doing drugs or by riding with anyone who is under the influence of alcohol or drugs.Please wear yours as a promise that you will not endanger your life during this holiday season by drinking or doing drugs or by riding with anyone who is under the influence of alcohol or drugs.Let’s keep our promise alive …SADD – Working to end death and injury due to impaired driving, underage drinking, or drug use.
Grim Reaper Day (also often called Ghost Out Day or White Out Day) is a traditional activity for SADD chapters, dating back to the earliest days of the organization. But today research shows such “scare tactics” have only a very brief and limited impact on behavior. Grim Reaper days do have some other benefits – they are high-visibility within the school, helping call attention to the chapter, and the media likes the dramatic visuals, so it’s often easy to get good media coverage, which can lead to donations and other relationships with the community at large.
Because the impact of Grim Reaper Day is brief – no more than a day or two of behavior change can be shown in research studies – it’s important that if you do choose to do this activity, you do it as close as possible to a high-risk time for impaired driving and underage drinking, such as prom or homecoming. The issues of underage drinking and impaired driving should be approached with a comprehensive education and prevention plan, of which Grim Reaper Day should be one small part. SADD offers other evidence-based programs that are more likely to lead to behavior change.
What to Do
- Select a “grim reaper” for the day. (When planning your day, don’t forget to receive permission from your principal and notify teachers of what will be taking place.) Dress him/her in all black and paint the face white. Blacken the eye sockets with black face paint.
- Every 53 minutes, a gong will sound over the PA system and the grim reaper will enter a classroom and pull a selected student from the class. Each victim’s face will be painted white and have one teardrop outlined on his/her face. The victims will be “dead” for the rest of the day and cannot speak to anyone.
- Make a placard for each victim that says something like “I died at 10:08” or “I’m just a memory now.” You may also give the victims death certificates and obituaries describing the impaired driving crash that killed them.
- All of the “dead” should sit together at lunch, not speaking to anyone.
- Display a coffin in the cafeteria with a mirror placed inside so that when students look in the coffin they will see themselves.
- When school lets out, the victims lie side by side on the campus grounds – rows of bodies covered with white sheets.
- Have posters, fliers, and/or pamphlets ready to hand out to students to explain the dangers of driving while impaired and to explain the “Grim Reaper Day” event.
If this dramatization is too elaborate or difficult to arrange in your school, you may choose to do this modified version.
- In the morning, announce that every 53 minutes throughout the day a bell will ring to commemorate those Americans who will be killed by impaired drivers that day. Then ring the bell over the speaker system at the appropriate interval.
- At the end of the day, read the following announcement: “If you were disturbed or troubled by the ringing of the bell every 53 minutes today, imagine how distraught and upset the friends and families of the victims of impaired drivers must feel.”
Lights on for Life Day
Lights on for Life Day is a symbolic headlight observance designed to focus attention on the impaired driving issue. It is also the kickoff for National Holiday Lifesavers Weekend which is always the weekend before Christmas.
As a nation we have made record decreases in impaired driving in each of the past three years. Yet, tragically, impaired driving continues to kill thousands of Americans. Nearly 12,000 people die every year in alcohol and drug-related crashes: one person dead every 53 minutes and one person injured every two minutes. These are not accidents — they are violent crimes.
To save more lives and reach the goal of reducing impaired driving-related deaths, we must continue to generate a greater national urgency to stop death and injury on our nation’s highways and byways. To accomplish this we need to change the way American people view impaired driving. We need everyone’s help. Impaired driving is not just a problem for law enforcement, courts or victims. It affects the entire community. When impaired drivers take to the road, they not only put themselves at risk, they also put the public’s safety in jeopardy. In addition to the physical and emotional damage they inflict as a result of their careless behavior, they place a huge financial burden on the community.
National Holiday Lifesavers Weekend takes place in December. During this weekend, law enforcement agencies stage a three-day crackdown on impaired drivers through the use of sobriety checkpoints and saturation patrols.
SADD chapters can join with others across the country in this effort, and encourage drivers to drive with their headlights on throughout the day. This effort will recognize those who have been killed or injured by impaired drivers and remind the public that alcohol and drug-related crashes are preventable.
How can SADD chapters participate in National Holiday Lifesavers Weekend?
- Ask the mayor or governing board to proclaim National Holiday Lifesavers Weekend.
- Develop a flier about the weekend, highlighting Lights on for Life Day, and ask delivery services such as pizza shops, restaurants, florists, etc., to distribute these fliers with their deliveries.
- Ask bus companies, subways, cab companies and others to hang posters in their vehicles and office areas about Lights on for Life Day.
- Contact local businesses and corporations and ask them to invite their employees to participate. It is an easy, no cost way for them to support traffic safety initiatives.
- Contact all city and town employees, such as the police department, the fire department and others, and urge them to participate.
- Place notices in the mailboxes of all the staff at your local schools asking staff members to participate.
- Work with your local media outlets to raise the awareness of the general populace about the deadly consequences of impaired driving. And don’t forget the financial consequences.
- Ask your local school bus company to turn their lights on to and from school. Also ask to hang posters in each bus so that students will know the significance of Lights on for Life Day.
- Before school ends on Thursday and again on Friday remind everyone of the day and request that they turn on their headlights.
- Contact your local law enforcement agency and offer to work with them on the sobriety checkpoints.
- Ask residents to turn on their porch lights, holiday lights and floodlights to send messages throughout the neighborhood against impaired driving.
All-Night Parties — The “All-Nighter”
The two most frightening times of the school year for principals and staff are prom and graduation. In an effort to provide a tragedy-free prom and graduation season, schools, parents and communities across the country are joining forces to provide alcohol- and drug-free “All Night Parties” for their students as a safe alternative to the usual drinking and driving from party to party that takes place.
Many students feel that after prom and graduation their celebrations must include alcohol, that drinking is a rite of passage. Some parents even condone these celebrations, rationalizing that since young people are “going to drink anyway,” why not provide them a place, take their keys and let them party?
Young people attend parties throughout the year, but peer pressure is highest on these two occasions, when energy and excitement run high and students feel invincible. The “All Nighter” is a chance to give our young people a wonderful memory, keep them alive, build a tradition and provide them a stress-free alternative. They don’t have to make a decision to drink or not to drink: there is no choice — and no chance to lose face. And everyone has a party to attend and celebrate together. No one is left out. In the case of a senior prom or graduation celebration, it will be the last time seniors will be together as a class. Parents will know where their students are, what they are doing and that they are safe while having the time of their lives. And parents can actually go to bed and get a good night’s sleep. If your school and community already hosts an all night prom or graduation party, congratulations! If not, it’s never too late to start.
– Develop a Theme
Tie all of your decorations and activities into your theme. Some ideas for themes can be found on the following pages. Make sure you have activities planned for every minute. Just when you think everyone is tired and/or getting bored, get everyone moving again with a limbo contest or a game of giant Twister.
– Make it Special
Remember that you are competing with what some kids consider a night of drinking without a chaperone. To convince teens to come, you have to offer activities that they won’t find elsewhere.
– Plan the Event
Check out different locations to hold your event. Try a local health club where you can use the pool, tennis courts and other facilities. You can also lavishly decorate your school to match your theme. Plan the event in advance — planning and preparation take time.
– Plan Something for Everyone
Plan a large range of activities so that there will be something for everyone — for example, sports activities, karaoke, group games such as a limbo contest, Twister, board games, movies, etc.
– Share Your Concerns
Make the evening fun and exciting but don’t forget to mention why an alcohol and drug-free party is important.
– Plan a Parents’ Night
Invite the parents to come in before the event. Explain the reasons for having an all-night alcohol- and drug-free party and discuss the facts and dangers of alcohol, ecstasy and other drugs. Consider inviting your police chief and a ocal lawyer to explain the laws and liability surrounding underage drinking.
– Involve the Community
This event provides an opportunity to build strong community support and raise everyone’s awareness concerning high risk issues for young people. You can invite your community to partner in this project by donating time, food, money, space, or whatever else you need.
– Create a Strong Conclusion
Plan a special event for the end of the evening that everyone can enjoy and remember. A great idea for this is a slide show of photos from the past to the present or a “senior video.” Students, faculty, and parents can work together on this event.
– Remember to Say Thank You
Make it a point to say thank you to everyone who helped to make the evening a success. A thank you breakfast or coffee afterward is nice. A thank you ad in your local newspaper is also a good way to show your appreciation.
One of the most important aspects of having a successful “All-Nighter” (besides the food) is the activity. You need to have lots of different activities. While “Shop ‘Til You Drop” is apropos of spending the day at the mall, “Play ‘Til You Plop” is the name of the game at the All-Night Bash.
An All-Night Bash can be as successful in your own high school as in a health club or other facility if you make the decorations outrageous and the activities fun and exciting. Tie the activities into your theme: for instance, if your theme is a jungle theme, instead of just bowling, call it coconut bowling. Plan activities for the entire evening. If there is a lag time between activities, some students may get bored.
Try some of these zany ideas for adding fun and silliness to your “All-Nighter.”
- Pin the Tail on the Elephant — or whatever fits your theme. It could be a star on the Empire State Building.
- Tattoo Parlor — Invite someone from your community or local art school to paint small, temporary tattoos on students using washable body paints, or purchase commercially available temporary tattoos.
- Find the Jelly Bean — Place two jelly beans inside a pie tin and cover them with at least two inches of whipped cream. Prepare one pie tin for each contestant. Place goggles on each contestant. At the whistle, each student tries to find the jelly beans without using his/her hands. Allow two cans of whipped cream per pie tin. Do not dispense the whipped cream until immediately before the event or it will melt.
- Instant Photos — These photos on key chains or just as candid shots are great souvenirs. Large cardboard or foam-core cutouts, theme props or “stick your head through the hole” props are lots of fun. If your theme is Egyptian, how about a large pyramid or a giamt mummy as a backdrop for pictures?
- Graffiti Wall – Cover a large area with paper (a large window shade also works well). Students can write or draw messages with markers. It can be given to the class to be brought out for class reunions.
- Name the Legs Contest – Blow up pictures of students’ legs from different activities or take pictures to post on a board. Have the students guess whose legs they are. You could give them a list for them to work from (you could also use movie stars’ legs).
- Game Show – Use your imagination in adapting a current TV show for students to play, e.g. “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire,” “Survivor,” or “Hollywood Squares.” Make sure you find a dynamic emcee (volunteer) to host this activity. With the right volunteer, it can be a smash hit.
- Teacher Bingo Contest – Ask nine or twelve teachers or administrators if you can use their baby pictures for this activity. Post the photos on a board. Give students a list of names to match up with the pictures. This is a fun activity and the students love to see their teachers and administrators as their former selves. Don’t forget to post the correct names with the correct pictures at the end of the contest so everyone can see who’s whom.
- Senior Slide Show – Have some members of the class prepare a slide show of your class year or years together by taking slides of old photos and yearbook photos and school activities. Invite seniors and parents to bring in favorite old photos from students’ younger days, dance recitals, and old team or class pictures. Halloween photos are great and they bring back wonderful memories. Try to make sure that every senior is included in the slide show. A tape of music coordinated with the pictures will make the show complete. Make the slide show the grand finale — it can be a real tear-jerker! The slide show can also be put on a video and even on a CD that the class or after prom committee can sell. For complete directions for producing a slide show, call the SADD National Office.
- Frisbee Throw – Hang an inflatable pool tube or hula hoop from the ceiling and have students try to throw a Frisbee through it at a target or just through the hoop. Give three chances, and don’t forget to award prizes.
- Nail Art – Ask local nail artists to donate some time at your event to paint designs and fun colors on nails — moons, stars, graduation caps, roses, hearts and rainbows are just a few ideas.
- Caricatures and Silhouettes – Invite talented community members or art students to attend and do caricatures or silhouettes of the partygoers.
- Prophecy/Predictions — This is a variation of the time capsule. Students fill out a prediction of what they will be in ten years — discovered by Hollywood, rock star, married, doctor, lawyer, etc. These are great fun when read at the tenth year reunion. Make sure you find a safe place for these and any other items, such as the slide show, that are going to be used at a later date.
- Lucky Monkey Search – Make lots of identical monkeys (or whatever fits your theme) and one that is different. Hang them all up and have the students search for the “lucky/ different” one. The winner receives a prize.
- Giant Twister – Gather ten to twenty Twister games and put them all together. Have teams play and watch the fun. Don’t forget to award a prize to the winning team.
These are just a few of the activities that you can plan for your alcohol- and drug-free party. There are many more that you can create. Don’t forget entertainment — a DJ, karaoke, a hypnotist, or a comedian can also be fun.
Have a great time!
Kiddie Notes- Have elementary students write message cards reminding prom attendees not to drink and drive on prom night. Then have the notes attached to flowers and give out as people leave the dance.
Senior Sponsored Night- Invite college students from local colleges to meet with seniors to discuss college life. Make sure to ask students who can present a good “No Use” message and who can give good information about student responsibilities.
Prom Promise- Have a prom promise between dates. Make up a contract for dates to sign together (about remaining sober for the prom).
Flower Shops- Have local flower shops hang a sign in their window asking students to have a sober and safe prom like this one.
OTHER PROM IDEAS
- Don’t use beer, wine, or shot glasses as souvenirs.
- Plan casino games, beach party, etc. for after prom
- Put fliers on cars in the parking lot so when students leave prom they see the “sober message.”
- Put fliers in tuxedo pockets about safe driving responsibilities.
Community Welcome Sign- Have your wood shop class help make a sign, “Welcome to Any Town. Don’t Drink and Drive from Any Town High SADD.”
Police Ride-along- Make arrangements to do an evening patrol to observe police work.
Billboard Campaign- Rent a billboard for one year. Have names of those killed put on the board or some other type of message.
Support Groups- Help sponsor a support group (through your counseling department) for students who live in homes where alcohol/drug abuse is taking place.
Resource Room- Check with your school/public library to ask if they have a drug or alcohol information resource room. Offer to help obtain material for the room. Use money from fund-raisers to purchase new items.
PTA Newsletter- Use this newsletter as a means of making parents more aware of your activities and the dangers of drunk driving.
Cab/Bus Campaign- Get permission from a company or the city to put SADD bumper stickers on their vehicle bumpers.
Airplane Message- Have an airplane service tow a SADD message over your school or town on special occasions, holidays, etc. Use a sky writing plane, too!
Theater Slides- Provide local movie theaters with slides with the SADD message to include in their previews.
Homeless Helpers- Help feed the homeless one day a month or visit a nursing home, children’s hospital, or crisis center.
Napkin Message- Ask local restaurants to provide napkins with the SADD message during prom and graduation season.
Liquor Store Notice- Make sure local liquor stores know about graduation date. Ask them to “double-check” IDs and put up signs about underage drinking.
Merchant Discount- Work with merchants to offer discounts from tux rentals, flowers and restaurants to those who sign contract or pledge cards, indicating no drinking during prom season.
Graduation Message- Give out SADD key chains with the “Congrats” message to each senior at your school.
Senior Cake- Sponsor sheet cake(s) for seniors during their last meeting and/or rehearsal. Put SADD’s logo and message, “Friends Forever – class of ‘??.”
Senior BBQ– Have your chapter sponsor a BBQ for seniors (or a brunch, breakfast, etc.)
Prom Breakfast- Sponsor a post prom breakfast.
Free Prom Pictures- Sponsor a drawing for a free prom picture package. Enter the names of those who signed a SADD Contract for Life. Work with your prom photographer.
Ticket Message- Ask that a “Drive Sober” message be printed on all prom tickets.
Trick – 0 – Spreading the Safety Message- Have SADD members go around to the elementary schools during the Halloween season dressed up in costumes. They should pass out candy to the students to warn them not to take candy from strangers.
Summer Safe Cards- As students leave school in June, give out cards that read “Be back in the fall.” Get local merchant to offer a one-time discount with the card. Do the same thing for the incoming freshman with “Welcome to Any Town High — Join SADD!”
Back to School Theme- Plan a kickoff publicity campaign: “Friends are forever, Drugs are NOT!”
Holiday Baskets for Needy-Make a basket for a needy family, complete with food for a great dinner. (Do something at Thanksgiving, Christmas or Easter.)
Secret Santa- Sponsor a Secret Santa project during the last week of school before break.
Mistletoe Message- Tie mistletoe to car antenna with the message, “If you decide to drink and drive — kiss it good-bye.”
April Fool’s Day- Organize a day of “I’m no fool … I’m drug-free” campaign. Give out stickers, pledge cards, etc.
Package Buy-off-Have community businesses donate items to wrap (radios, CDs, posters, etc.). Have students buy $1 chance to pick a box. Fill many boxes (different sizes and with weights in them) with coupons for free movies, hamburgers, etc., or with a message attached to a SADD button.
SADD Ornament- Many schools put up a Christmas tree. Make the -top decoration something symbolizing SADD and hope for a safe holiday.
Faculty Follies- Have faculty and parents get involved with a program (songs, skits, etc.) during the last day before the holiday break.
Valentine Messages- Give or sell carnations or buttons with the message saying, “I don’t drink and drive because I love ________.”
Parents’ Party Guide- Put together a party guide for all parents and distribute during prom/grad season. Include parent responsibilities, laws concerning teenage drinking, and ideas for safe sober fun.
Fashion Show- Sponsor a SADD Tux and Gown Fashion Show. Have students for models and have local merchants help supply gowns and tuxes.
Announcements- Have announcements each morning that have to do with drinking and driving statistics. Make them at a set time each day or, if you are having a one day event, do them during each class that day.
Decorate the Community- Have a tree decorated with red ribbons with names of victims of drunk driving crashes attached.
Coffee House- Sponsor a coffee house with coffee, juice, tea, and soft drinks. Use a 60’s theme!
Sign Signals- Develop and distribute bar signs – “Please don’t ask me to serve minors,” or “This state is tough on drunk drivers!”
Welcome Wagon-Offer information about SADD to the Chamber of Commerce, Welcome Wagon groups, etc., to include in packets for new residents.
Red Ribbon Activity
The purpose of the Red Ribbon Campaign is to present a visible commitment to a safe, healthy and drug-free lifestyle. The campaign is designed to accomplish the following:
- to create awareness concerning the problems related to the use of tobacco, alcohol and other drugs
- to support the decision to live a healthy, drug-free lifestyle.
Red Ribbon Week began in 1988 in honor of DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) Agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena, who was kidnapped and killed in Mexico in February of 1985. Agent Camarena, then 37, had uncovered a multi-billion dollar drug scam in which he suspected officers of the Mexican Army, police forces and government. As he left his office one day, five men appeared at his side and kidnapped him. His body was found one month later in a shallow grave; he had been tortured and beaten.
The first Red Ribbon Week was proclaimed in 1988 by the U.S. Congress in support of Agent Camarena and the cause he gave his life for — combating drugs. The week is marked by the wearing of a red ribbon to send the message: Live drug-free!
National Red Ribbon Week is the last week of October. SADD chapters are encouraged to celebrate Red Ribbon Week to symbolize their commitment to a healthy, drug-free lifestyle and to create awareness of the problems related to the use of tobacco, alcohol and other drugs.
The following is a list of a variety of activities your chapter may conduct in conjunction with Red Ribbon Week.
- Paint the Town Red – Erect banners and exhibits in your school and in other community locations explaining the symbolism of the red ribbon.
- Encourage your city’s mayor to officially proclaim Red Ribbon Week. Plan a community-wide celebration that includes fun activities, live music, games and food. Emphasize that everyone can have fun without drugs.
- Decorate your community with red ribbons. Tie them on parking meters, tree branches and park benches.
- Distribute red ribbons to students and school personnel and ask them to wear the ribbons all week.
- Give out small prizes, such as Hershey’s Kisses or Smarties, to people caught wearing red ribbons later in the week.
- Show a video at your school about the danger of tobacco, alcohol and other drug use.
- Invite a member of the DEA in your area to speak to the students about the dangerous consequences of using drugs and the legal implications.
- Visit your middle school and elementary schools and speak to the students about the red ribbon and ask them to wear one as a commitment to be drug-free.
- Bring a bag filled with several items including cigarettes, vitamins, wine cooler bottle, candy bar, juice box, apple, chewing tobacco, snuff, etc., when you visit the middle school and elementary school. Pull out one item at a time and ask students if it is a drug or not. Reward kids with a treat for their correct answers.
- Give out red ribbons and lollipops during your city’s Halloween celebration.
- Conduct a red ribbon poster contest in the elementary school depicting dangerous drugs and their consequences.
- Host a family Strides for Safety Walk. Present everyone with a red ribbon to wear. Ask kids to write songs or chants they can sing during the walk.
- Set up a health fair in your school. Invite local agencies to set up displays and exhibits with hands-on activities emphasizing the consequences of using tobacco, alcohol and other drugs.
- Place red ribbons on all school lockers and in teachers’ mailboxes as a reminder to remain drug-free.
- Ask your local newspaper to print a red ribbon and message in the paper.
- Develop a red ribbon message and ask local radio stations to play it for you.
- Ask your local cable station to do a show about Red Ribbon Week. Also ask them to run printed messages on their message board encouraging viewers to be drug-free.
These are just a few of the ways to celebrate Red Ribbon Week in your school and community. You may have additional ideas and activities. Let us know about them and SEND PHOTOGRAPHS. Paint the town red!
Keep It a Safe Summer
Classes will soon be over. There will be no more homework, just lots of free time to enjoy the summer. Right? Not a chance if you’re a member of your school’s SADD chapter. Summertime means SADD chapters work overtime. Recent statistics indicate that a very high number of youth fatalities occurs during the summer months of June, July and August.
Contrary to the movie Death Takes a Holiday, death does not take holidays. In fact, it rears its ugly head often during the summer months. For this reason, SADD chapters must double their efforts in summer.
Without the hassles of school, homework and athletic commitments, summertime provides SADD chapters a unique opportunity to do new and exciting things that they don’t have time to do during the school year. The following are some activities you can consider, but use your imagination to develop others.
Work with your community to provide a variety of fun activities for teens so they don’t resort to dangerous and destructive behavior because they have nothing else to do.
Sponsor a float in your 4th of July or Labor Day parade. If your community has a holiday celebration, you may want to choose to display a crashed car to point out the dangers of underage drinking, impaired driving and aggressive driving. Be sure that the crashed car does not have any history or significance in your community.
Plan an outdoor dance under the stars at a local tennis or basketball court or even a parking lot at school.
Host an old fashioned field day with sack races, three legged races, egg throws, toilet paper wraps and other fun activities. Ask local pizza restaurants to donate pizza and soda for the event.
Visit local liquor stores and convenience stores and ask them to be diligent about checking IDs and not selling to anyone under the age of 21.
Every school has a number of musical groups. Why not have a “Battle of the Bands” or a music fest where each group has a chance to perform? You could sell refreshments to raise funds for your SADD chapter.
Plan a fun walk/run with a picnic or barbeque at the finish. You could even have a DJ. Ask a local civic organization such as Rotary, Lions Club, or Elks to provide food and beverages.
Ask your local recreation center to sponsor a pool party for young adults with music, food and dancing.
Consider having a talent show. It could be talent-specific, such as a country music contest, or open to all kinds of talent.
Ask your local radio stations to broadcast public service announcements. A free CD with PSAs is available from the SADD National Office, or you may develop your own.
Don’t forget the importance of “buckling up.” Hold a Buckle Up for Safety Day at your local beach. Conduct the Quick Click Buckle Challenge, encouraging everyone to compete. Award prizes. Invite the media and distribute literature on the importance of air bags, safety seats and seat belts. If we could get every teen to buckle up, we would save hundreds of lives!
Urge establishments that serve liquor to be alert for customers who have had too much to drink and to assist them in getting home without driving.
Design and distribute table tents to local restaurants, pubs and other eating establishments to remind customers it is illegal to drink under the age of 21 and not to mix drinking with other activities such as biking, swimming, and boating.
Your SADD chapter will have great fun making this a safe summer in your community.
Calling Card for Homecoming- Have cards printed up with message such as “After Homecoming, arrive alive, Don’t drink and drive.” Distribute to local tuxedo rental shops and florists for distribution.
Spring Break Blitz- Have an annual Spring Break party for students — the day before Spring Break. Set up a large area with sand for a “beach.” Have volleyball during lunch, a swimsuit fashion show by local store, free ice cream, etc.
Lollipop Day- Distribute lollipops with the message “Don’t be a sucker — drinking and driving kills!”
Newspaper Ads/Bulletins- Work with your school paper, community paper, PTA bulletin, school bulletins and/or school announcements. Put in information about your chapter and its activities and include statistics about drinking.
School /Community Murals- Do a mural with drug-free messages. Ask each student in the school and/or chapter to help out. Have a dedication with city officials or school administration.
Skeleton Display- Use the science department skeleton in a wheelchair to portray the message “Think twice when a drunk driver offers to take you WITH HIM.”
Birthday Message- Deliver a birthday card and key chain to students in the school when they turn 16 with a message about being sober.
Teacher Appreciation- Have a teacher appreciation brunch, lunch or breakfast. Present each teacher with an apple as a way to say thanks for supporting SADD activities.
Trash Can Decorations- Paint trash cans for your community, park, or school with the message “Trash drunk driving.”
Never Again Campaign- If a student loses his/her life or is injured in a crash, sponsor a “never again” campaign in honor of that student.
Billboard Campaign- Get a billboard for one year. Have names of those killed put on the board after each crash.
Candlelight Vigil- Have a vigil in honor of those killed by drunk drivers. Partner with MADD, police departments, or other service groups.
Video- Make a video of students practicing refusal skills in difficult situations. Use as a teaching tool or to supplement an awareness program.
Survey- Survey students to find out about their attitudes and concerns on teen issues. Use that information to present workshops on those topics.
Support Groups- Help sponsor a support group (through your counseling department) for students who live in homes where alcohol or drug abuse is taking place.
Open House- Set up safe driving/drug-free booth at your school’s open house night. Ask parents to take a “Contract For Life” home.
Buckle Up For Safety- Place “Buckle Up Against Drunk Driving” signs in the school parking lot.
Friends Are Forever Chain- Create a chain with hundreds of hand-prints (use paint) on the school sidewalk, or community’s Main Street sidewalk. Use the theme such as “Take a Hand in Friendship – Save a Life. Don’t Drink and Drive.”
Resource Room- Check with your school/public library to ask if they have a drug and alcohol information resource room or area. Offer to help obtain material for the room. Use money from fund-raisers to purchase new items.
Poster Contest- Exchange posters with another school. Have the contest exchange winners with another school or make it a competition.
Speed Bump Messages- Print “Buckle Up” and “Don’t Drink and Drive” messages on your parking lot speed bumps at your school, area mall, etc.
Blue Light Special- Place a blue light bulb in a known place at school or town area. When a DUI crash happens, change to red for 24 hours.
Theme Contest- Have each grade as a team. Members make up phrases dealing with road safety and drinking and driving. Be sure to include some fun themes, too! Have local merchants donate prizes for the winning team.
Coffin Display- Have displayed a few days before prom or graduation. Place a mirror in the coffin so people will be looking at themselves. Use the message “This Could Be You – Don’t Drink and Drive.”
Mock Crash- Have police and fire departments help put together a mock crash for juniors and seniors during prom season. Mock Car Crash Instructions
Coffin Assembly- Start off an assembly by having a coffin on stage. Open curtains with only one light on – focused on coffin. Have 2-5 minutes of nothing except the visual contact of the coffin. When there is silence, there is thought. Then begin the assembly.
Limo Ride- Raffle off a limo for the prom. Either give away raffle tickets or use as a fund-raiser.
Merchant Discount- Work with merchants to offer discounts from tux rentals, flowers or restaurants to those who sign contract or pledge cards indicating no drinking during prom season.
Announcement- Have half-time message announced about safe drinking after the game.
Dead Night- Have appearances of “dead people” every 53 minutes during a football game. Display signs on their backs that read “Drunk Driving Kills.” Have them wear all black with faces painted white.
Remembrance Vigil- If your school lost a student or a faculty member within the last school year, hold a candlelight vigil during half-time in remembrance.
Membership Drive- Set up a table during school registration. Offer juice, water, cookies, etc. Invite students to sign up early.
- Visit classes that have interest in health and safety issues — drivers education, health classes, etc.
- During lunch set up a booth for membership sign up. Offer a Contract for Life as they sign up for the chapter.
- Invite all class officers to your first meeting. Display a sign to show the growing membership. Make it a % contest for each class.
Mock-tail Contest- Get involved with the spirit. At Christmas time, sponsor a contest of non alcoholic drinks and publish the list in the school paper, parent newsletter, or hometown paper. Offer to make the winning drink during a teachers meeting, PTA group, or even the school board meeting as refreshments.
Game Show- Use the outline of a TV game show and change it to fit the design of an assembly (for example, “Win, Lose, Or Draw!”) Have contestants from each class and use drawings to illustrate safe holiday.
Rap Contest- Sponsor a rap contest about being sober. Winner would perform at a pep rally.
Bionic Day- Have a SADD-sponsored bionic day — “Believe it or not, I care.”
Mock DUI Stop- Work with your local law enforcement agency to invite an officer to come out and perform a mock DUI stop and tests to a student who is portraying a drunk driver.
Guest Speakers- Have a police officer, social worker, victim of a drunk driving crash, or a person who was the drunk driver talk.
Video/Movies- Try to provide some different videos about alcohol and drugs for individual teachers to use during their own class time. Your state may have some that may be borrowed at no charge. Also call your police or health agencies – they sometimes have materials you can distribute.
Volleyball/Other Tournament- Just for fun sponsor tournaments using other clubs, classes, or teachers to have games during lunch. Present a trophy to the winning team or provide donuts one morning or pizza at lunch. This could be an annual event.
BYOB- Have a party with the theme “BYOB” — “Bring Your Own Banana.” Offer refreshments and ice cream for banana splits.
SADD Spirit Day- Have all members wear their SADD shirts on meeting days or a specific day each month.
Game Night- Sponsor a game night for 4th through 6th graders from your feeder school. Have members bring their own board games for a better variety. Plan several different contests during the night. If it goes well, sponsor the night once a month.
B-I-N-G-O Night- Have your club sponsor a Bingo Night where members will run several Bingo games and offer prizes to the winners. (SADD mugs, T-shirts, pens, etc., could be several of the prizes.)
Casino Night- With the help of parents, have your chapter sponsor a casino night during which gambling tables and coin machines are set up, and serve non alcoholic drinks.
Dance Lessons- Sponsor dance lessons as a fund-raiser for your chapter (i.e. country, hip-hop, club, etc.).
Get a Kiss! – Set up a game in which questions will be asked about drinking and driving status, laws, and consequences. (You could also throw in other questions that the crowd would know.) The contestant who answers correctly receives a kiss… a Hershey’s Chocolate Kiss!
Battle of the Bands- Sponsor a battle of the bands to create a drug and alcohol-free activity.
Poster Power- Put up posters about your chapter in storefront windows, movie theaters, corporation message boards, tuxedo shops, parking garages, bus stations, and restaurants by the exit.
Baby-sitter Survival Kit- Assemble a kit – what to do if the parents come home drunk, what to say, how to keep the job, etc. Don’t just “stick it out” and ride home with an impaired person. Distribute to Boys & Girls Clubs, 4-H and other youth groups.
Non-alcoholic Bartenders Contest- Sponsor a citywide bartenders contest to create the best non alcoholic mixed drink. Have celebrities judge and present trophies to winners.
Poster/Essay Contest – Offer a poster contest with prizes for the entries. This is a great way to get your Art or English classes involved!
Decorate a Door Contest- If your school has homerooms, have a contest for each homeroom to decorate the door with a drug/alcohol-free message. Have local officials or parents do the judging and offer a party to the winning class.
Sucker/Lifesaver- Pass out suckers with the messages, “Don’t be a sucker! — Don’t Drink and Drive” or Lifesavers with the message, “Be a Lifesaver… Don’t Drink and Drive.”
Health Fair- Invite agencies to set up booths during lunch. Have a radio station DJ there to play music. Some suggestions for booths include – AAA, MADD, National Council on Alcoholism, local police, hospital personnel, American Cancer Society, seat belt, neighborhood associations, etc.
Red Ribbon Rampage- Tie red ribbons on all doors and/or lockers with reminders of an alcohol/drug-free school. Sell carnations with the Contract for Life. Put fliers on cars during football/basketball games with information about SADD.
Announcements- Have announcements each morning about drinking and driving statistics. Do them at a set time each day or, if you are having a one day event, do them during each class that day.
Crash Car Display- Many local junkyards will donate the use of a crashed car to have on campus. Make a sign that reads, “You Drink, You Drive, You Die!” to hang on the car. Make sure that the car and incident it was involved in is unknown. You do not want to cause more grief to someone who sees this specific car on display.
Halloween Fun- Sponsor a costume party for a younger age group. Have a spook house with non-alcoholic drinks.
- “Ghost-Out”– Have students dress in black with white faces to portray those killed by drunk drivers.
- Sponsor a pumpkin-designing contest.
- Visit hospitals and take treats/small toys to youth who can’t go trick or treating