The pledge to be drug-free: Red Ribbon Week 2020

Students and teachers raise awareness for drug prevention during Red Ribbon Week.


K. Fry

Orchestra students wearing all red to support Red Ribbon Week.

Every October, students and teachers celebrate Red Ribbon Week, the largest drug-abuse campaign in the nation since 1985. At Wiregrass, red ribbons are seen throughout the school to symbolize the commitment to this cause, students and teachers participate in a dress-up week, and videos are shown promoting a drug-free lifestyle.

The National Family Partnership organized the first National Red Ribbon Week to pay tribute to DEA Special Agent Enrique Camarena, after being murdered by drug traffickers. Wearing red ribbons during the month of October continues to honor the sacrifice of all who have lost their lives in the fight against drugs. 

The Students Against Destruction Decisions (SADD) club is responsible for organizing Red Ribbon Week events at Wiregrass Ranch. SADD is an organization who’s mission is to empower youth to successfully confront the risks and pressures of their daily lives.

“Red Ribbon Week is important to provide students and our community with information and knowledge of the harms that using drugs can do,” SADD club sponsor Gregory Finkel explained. “We hope to touch the lives of at least a few who struggle through their own issues, but we also hope to enlighten the many who are surrounded by this problem.”

Freshman, Khalfani Caldwell, ‘teams up against drugs” by wearing a jersey (K. Fry)

SADD club co-president, Shaina Finkel, hopes that this week helps educate the student body to make better choices.

“I think the videos that were made by SADD club are very important in recognizing this week. It is our main source of communication to the student body on the harms and dangers of drug use,” Shaina Finkel said. “This is a very serious topic and we hope that students take this information and make a change.”

Along with the videos played during WIN periods all week, many students participated in a themed-dress up week SADD hosted. The days included “Team up against drugs and wear your favorite sports/team jersey” on Monday, “Socks it to drugs and wear crazy socks” on Tuesday, “Whiteout drugs and wear all white” on Wednesday, “Be your own hero and don’t do drugs by wearing your favorite superhero shirt” on Thursday, and “Red out and wear all red” on Friday.

“It is fun to be able to dress up while also spreading awareness to a cause that our club is very adamant about,” Senior SADD club member Madison Remaley said.

English teacher, Kimberly Krook is ‘being her own superhero’ by wearing her favorite superhero shirt. (Zoi Evans)

Some teachers expressed a commitment to spread the message of positive choices throughout the entire school year, not just during Red Ribbon Week.

“In my class, we have discussions all the time about not just drugs but about making good decisions and decisions that are going to have a positive impact later on down the road as well,” English and Debate teacher Paula Berry explained.

SADD club is hopeful that this week helped make an impact on the students of Wiregrass.

“The goal is to educate the youth of today and save lives,” Gregory Finkel said.