For one week, students all over Harlingen Consolidated Independent School District wore red to support a great cause.
HCISD celebrated Red Ribbon Week (RRW), which is dedicated to promoting a drug-free lifestyle to students and families.
“This week is about teaching our students the importance of the RRW campaign,” said Traci Gonzalez, principal at Rodriguez. “They learn how to be healthy and happy while remaining drug-free. It is a great learning opportunity for everyone involved.”
The weeklong campaign is celebrated at schools across America, and occurs once a year. Each year, the week has a different theme, and the slogan for this year was The Best Me is Drug-Free.
To compliment the theme, campuses hosted events, activities and parades to get into the spirit of saying no to drugs.
Members of the Harlingen Police Department (HPD) and Action 4 Meteorologist Victoria Marshall helped Crockett Elementary School kick-off RRW with a school pep-rally.
“Their participation in such an important event emphasizes their role in keeping everyone safe, and shows their support throughout our schools and community,” said Irma Ramirez, counselor at Crockett.
The HPD brought in their vehicles to show students, while students proudly displayed their RRW signs, and recited a pledge to remain drug-free.
Students had the chance to hear from their peers, Ashlyn Porras, a fifth grade student at Crockett, provided some words of encouragement to her fellow students.
“It is a time to celebrate the freedom we have by being drug-free,” Porras said. “We have a choice of who we want to be, and we promise to take a stand against the dangers of drugs.”
During the celebration at Jefferson Elementary School, students Stephanie Rodriguez, Kelly McLean, Rochelle Rodriguez, Austin Lambert and Jacob Villarreal also asked their classmates to say no to drugs.
Special guests were present at a number of campuses to help support the message. Author Ricky Pittman visited Rodriguez Elementary School to speak with students and perform the song Red Ribbon Day: A Song for Kiki.
Pittman wrote the song in dedication of Kiki Camarena, A DEA Agent dedicated to keeping the world drug-free and the inspiration for the RRW campaign.
“I’m excited to be here with the schools working together to call for healthy life,” Pittman said.
Every campus at HCISD hosted an event to inform students of the importance of remaining free from drug usage. Schools will continue to host events in honor of RRW until Oct. 31.