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  Racing Against Drugs Durham Celebrates 20 Years

May 01, 2017 15:05 ET

Racing Against Drugs (RAD) Durham is celebrating its 20th anniversary this week and will see over 6,500 Grade 5 students from the Durham District School Board and the Durham Catholic School Board at Whitby's Iroquois Park.

Running from May 1-5, the event will host around 200 schools this year. Each half-day session sees several area schools come together where students can interact, participate in friendly competition, learn and have fun. At the end of each session, the students meet on one ice pad to cheer on their teams at the final race where each school has a team of four students representing them. Members of DRPS will be assisting with medal presentations to the winners of the final race each day this week.

A community-based drug and alcohol awareness program, RAD was developed by the RCMP and is supported by a committee of members from DRPS, Durham Region schools and other community organizations. Presented to students in Durham Region, RAD is designed to promote a healthy, drug-free lifestyle through an exciting school program.

Re-enacting the excitement of auto racing, a sport with no tolerance for substance abuse, is one secret to the success of this program, which promotes:

- substance abuse awareness;
- healthy alternative choices, such as sports, hobbies or the arts; and
- a commitment to personal safety.

At each of the 34 educational pit stops on two ice pads, students learn about the dangers of alcohol and other drugs, as well as the benefits of a choosing healthy lifestyle. The Pit Stops are run by education, agency and business partners where schools rotate through each stop at eight-minute intervals.

This unique concept of learning helps to provide the students with a very meaningful and memorable experience. At the end of the 2016 event, approximately 121,000 students had been educated by this program.

Racing Against Drugs Durham is the largest of all of the provincial programs and the longest running over consecutive years.

Below are attached files.
DRPS Officers With Sparky (JPG file, 371.4K bytes)
Final Race Medal Presentations (JPG file, 1,373.9K bytes)
Learning About Cigarette Dangers (JPG file, 1,512.3K bytes)
OPP's Fitness Test (JPG file, 1,484.5K bytes)
Students Take A Walk With Impairment Goggles (JPG file, 1,166.1K bytes)