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Local nonprofit kicks off youth education program during Red Ribbon Week in Santa Ynez Valley


SANTA YNEZ, Calif. - From frisbees to brackets to poster boards, students at Santa Ynez High School are spreading a message.

“We plan to go to different schools to explain the cause and affects of Marijuana and how it can affect you as well," said student Diego Bautista of Santa Ynez High School.

People Helping People is working with the students to promote drug free and healthy lives across Santa Ynez Valley.

"The focus is on prevention work peer education and they really focus on cannabis and they try to outreach as many youth as possible to tell them about the you know the awareness and the causes of drugs and just being a healthy lifestyle," said youth program director Selene Sandoval of People Helping People.

“My main concern is how a lot of kids our age right now are getting addicted to drugs and alcohol and we are trying to stop that," said student Mia Ascencio of Santa Ynez High School.

Organizers of People Helping People said more than 20 students are taking part as peer educators this year.

"This week we have a full agenda we’re going to Solvang … they’re doing the high school here … table events … hosting and spreading through word on what it means to be drug free," said Sandoval.

"I’m really proud of our community because it’s hard to talk about this stuff … it’s hard to see if able to speak about it in general but here I’m really proud is everybody that’s join us in the Pirates Cove because they’re all willing to help our community," said Ascencio.

The program is funded through a grant from Santa Barbara County Behavioral Wellness.

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Patricia Martellotti

Patricia Martellotti is a reporter for News Channel 3-12. To learn more about Patricia, click here.


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