Lead & Seed Coalitions
Lead & Seed is a best-practice youth coalition program offered throughout La Porte County. With funding from a federal Drug Free Communities (DFC) grant, a cadre of 12 certified local trainers has trained youth to lead school and community activities aimed at substance abuse prevention. Lead & Seed youth coalitions in New Prairie, La Porte and Michigan City Area Schools have initiated the following:
- parent and legislative forums
- school assemblies
- community public service announcements
- Facebook pages
- pre-prom and social hosting events
- pledges from parents and peers
- communication strategies for prevention messages
The overarching goal of Lead & Seed is to provide opportunities for youth to develop into community leaders who can make a difference.
We also have helped develop and lead the annual La Porte County “Above the Influence” Youth Leadership Summits. These one-day events have brought together hundreds of youth from 15 schools throughout the county. The focus is on helping them understand their role related to prevention and empowering them as community change agents.
The Youth Summit draws non-traditional potential leaders, including those from high-risk urban areas. A Parent Forum is conducted at the same time and aims to equip parents with perspectives on risk and protective factors. The Youth Leadership Summits are supported by the federal Drug Free Communities grant and other local funding sources.
The La Porte County DFP collaborates on the planning of this event with the Michigan City Housing Authority, Purdue University North Central, Purdue Extension, Swanson Center, Michigan City Commission on the Social Status for African American Males, La Porte County NAACP, and a variety of other community organizations.
Recently, our Lead & Seed coalition at Krueger Middle School created a PSA for the #kickRxabuse Video Challenge—learn more about that project over on our blog!
Area schools and non-profit organizations come to the DFP table as providers of youth prevention efforts, such as New Prairie Schools’ Lead and Seed coalition (top photo), and Hey U.G.L.Y. (Unique Gifted Lovable You).