This year’s campaign, Relationships Flourish in a Healthy Environment, is designed to help teens understand the components of healthy relationships.
“The campaign features a garden theme,” said Kayla Grant, LACASA’s youth prevention services coordinator. “The goal is to show teens that relationships blossom when people feel respected, trusted, valued and safe.”
This year’s program focuses on increasing awareness about the importance of healthy relationships and recognizing when a relationship is unhealthy, Grant said. “We also let students know what services are available if they need support navigating a controlling relationship.”
During the high school workshops, teens attend special programs and receive awareness literature, fliers, resource cards, stickers, and ink pens with the words respected, trusted, valued and safe.
“Our workshops help students identify manipulative and harmful behaviors,” said Grant. “We let teens know it is important to weed out toxic and controlling relationships.”
The Teen Advisory Council and members of LACASA’s Community Education Department conduct the dating awareness campaign at every high school in the county. Participating schools include: Brighton High School, Flex Tech High School, Fowlerville High School, Hartland High School, Howell High School, Howell Freshman Campus, Kensington Woods High School, LEGACY, Pinckney High School, and Work Skills Academy.
“We know from experience that abuse victims often do not admit to friends or family what is happening in their relationships,” said Grant. “Our campaign is developed to help them recognize unhealthy relationships and to reach out for help.”
A variety of student groups at each high school will assist with the campaign as volunteer ambassadors. “It’s always exciting to see students get involved and help raise awareness among their friends and classmates.” Grant said.