2004 Narconon History Digest -- The Americas
In Florida, Narconon Director Cheryl Alderman was very active in reaching out to state and civic organizations and was also recognized for her successful work in drug rehabilitation. In June, Cheryl was sworn in as the president of the Florida School of Addiction Studies Alumni Board and in August, Narconon Florida was awarded the "Best Promising Program" by the Director of the Substance Abuse Program Office of the Florida Department of Children and Families.
She also was chosen to help administer and organize a new Youth Center to be opened in Pasco County the following year. And Narconon Florida was recognized by the Florida Alcohol and Drug Abuse Association by being included in its handbook for the state.
The Atlanta Narconon center staff were also active in their community in observance of Red Ribbon Week. Children in the inner city who had one or both parents addicted to drugs were taught anti-drug lessons from the "10 Things Your Friends May Not Know about Drugs" booklet and The Way to Happiness booklet. Narconon staff also participated in an event titled Makeup Artists Against Drugs, sponsored by the Boys and Girls Club. After girls and boys were taught good grooming, a drug prevention class was presented, including information on how drugs damage a person's appearance.
In New York City, Narconon drug education specialists were asked to contribute to the presentations given at the DEA Museum and Visitors Center at Times Square. Narconon presenters offered 45-minute anti-drug classes for youth visiting the Museum. Narconon was recommended by the New York State Demand Reduction Officer because of their reputation for holding lively, interactive classes.
Canadian Activities Expand in 2004
In Toronto, the Narconon First Step group received Ministry of Health funding to deliver their technology to members of the "Spirit Watch," a Native American street program. Also in 2004, another Toronto street program asked to participate in future First Step workshops.
At Narconon Trois-Riviers in Quebec, the group continued to increase delivery. In 2004, 25% more students received service than in 2003.
California Centers Deliver Life-Saving Rehab Services and Drug Education in Volume, and Open a New Center in Nevada
Shortly after Narconon Southern California expanded to San Diego (opening in 2003), increasing service demand required yet another facility. The Southern California looked for a good location for a new center and found one in Rainbow Canyon in Caliente, Nevada.
In addition to locating a new property, Southern California staff and students added their efforts to community activities sponsored by the Sunshine Summit Volunteer Fire Department, Parent Help USA (a group that helps prevent child abuse), Christian churches and the Warner Community Resources Center.
One of the highlights of the year's activities was the Narconon participation in the Orange County Substance Abuse Prevention Network event.
Just a few hundred miles away in Northern California, Narconon NorCal was busy delivering more service than ever before, and interacting with communities and health officials to spread the news about the ability of the Narconon program to save lives.
Narconon spokespersons appeared before Santa Cruz County's Health Services Agency Drug and Alcohol Commission to explain how the Narconon New Life Detoxification Program works. Narconon NorCal's medical director attested to the life-changing improvements he has seen as a result of this program and stated that it provides superior addiction recovery results compared to other services he has witnessed.
Another presentation was made to the local Advisory Board, composed of a sheriff, a county worker in the drug and alcohol division and prominent businesspeople. The recipients were enthusiastic about how the Narconon program could help them improve the addiction situation in the county.
California Drug Education Group Reaches More than 30,000 Young People
A Narconon drug education group based in Southern California traveled all over the Southland and even to Idaho and Arizona to make sure that young people do not start abusing drugs.
Headed up by Tony Bylsma, drug educators from the group gave presentations in more than 175 schools, clubs, family centers and other venues. Cooperative activities included programs with the Los Angeles Police Department, the LA County Sheriff's Office and Hope Worldwide, a group that works with underprivileged youth around the world.
January saw drug educators from this group speaking to 2,700 students in snowy Idaho and March took them to a small town in Arizona, where every student over the age of ten and all their teachers heard the anti-drug message.
Narconon First Step Program Begins to be Offered in Houston
Houston, which has never had a Narconon center, was a new location for the Narconon First Step program that offers a tolerable and healthy way to get people withdrawn off addictive drugs and back into communication with reality and their environments. The Rev. James McLaughlin of the African Methodist Episcopal Church was instrumental in this development. He and his wife Cleo traveled to Narconon Arrowhead in Oklahoma to learn how to deliver this service. They then established a faith-based delivery center for the First Step program in their hometown with the help of other churches in the city.
Hawaii Learns How to Stay off Drugs Through Narconon Drug Education
The Friends of Narconon, based in Los Angeles, obtained a grant that enabled them to distribute their Friends of Narconon Drug Educator Kits and two anti-drug videos to every public school in the state. Particular attention was paid to Hawaii as it had been in the throes of a methamphetamine epidemic for the prior few years. After City Councilman Mike Gabbard viewed these videos, he said, "Every child in Hawaii must see these videos!" They also presented the video program to head of the Safe and Drug-Free Schools section of the state Department of Education to also watch the videos. His observation was that every Hawaiian parent needed to also see the videos. As a result, Bobby Wiggins of Narconon International was invited to teach Narconon drug education techniques to health teachers.
"The Ladder Guys" Join in Narconon Anti-Drug Activities
The Ladder Guys are a group of volunteers who offer a huge inflatable attraction called The Ladder Challenge. Attendees at fairs, festivals, racing and other events try their skill and luck at climbing the slippery ladder. Each person is given a Narconon "10 Things your Friends May Not Know about Drugs" booklet and admission fees finance the distribution of booklets to schools and businesses. In 2004, the Ladder Guys handed out more than 21,000 booklets. One event was an international horse jumping competition, so booklets handed out at that venue went home to all corners of the globe. The Ladder Guys have appeared in California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, Colorado and Washington.
Wherever Narconon staff and volunteers go, people both young and old learn how important it is to stay drug-free.