ADAPAO Youth Award 2020 Recipient: Venture Youth to Youth

Posted on: December 6, 2020 11:00 pm

Venture Youth to Youth received the ADAPAO Youth Organization of the Year Award, an honor that recognizes exemplary efforts, utilizing youth-based prevention, to advance the mission of ADAPAO, by an agency, coalition, board, business, task force, or other group.  ADAPAO's mission: ADAPAO employs the power of dialogue, education, networking, and advocacy to amplify a united voice for prevention in Ohio.

Venture Youth to Youth is a youth-led program in Licking Valley School District in Licking County and applies its prevention work to all schools within the district.

In the elementary school program, more than 250 fifth-graders participate in an annual weekend drug-free conference, complete with drug-free fun and personal growth activities. Through small group facilitated discussions, large group activities, and community service, kids are introduced to the ideas of living drug free and, by simply being themselves, can create positive change in the world. 

The middle school program maintains engagement with the graduates of the elementary school program through a club format. Middle school students participate in twice-monthly club meetings and an annual retreat to grow their understanding of prevention and leadership, build resistance and coping skills, and to prepare them for the high school program.

At the high school, students develop and implement social awareness campaigns, serve as district-wide leaders, and enhance their skills through personal growth and leadership development opportunities, including a countywide Leaders’ Summit and the International Youth to Youth Conference.

None of this has been happenstance. The teens and adults committed to Venture Youth to Youth and its multi-faceted prevention approach have based their efforts on and continue to employ dialogue, education, networking, and advocacy to build and enhance prevention.

In just five years, Venture Youth to Youth has served more than 1,000 people and has ignited a passion in the district and the local community to sustain a happy, healthy, safe and drug-free environment for school, work, and life.

ADAPAO Is proud to honor the youth and adults of Venture Youth to Youth with the 2020 ADAPAO Youth Organization of the Year for modeling ADAPAO's mission and creating a culture of prevention within the Licking Valley School District and community.