Making A Documentary
Making a documentary about teens in recovery was an amazingly rewarding experience for so many reasons. I loved meeting the kids, some of whom show remarkable resilience. I loved profiling the programs that are working successfully in the areas of education, prevention and recovery. And, I loved meeting the people who make these programs work. These leaders are a special kind of dedicated. Getting the opportunity to experience, and film, all these elements working together was not only enlightening about problems and problem solving, but also inspiring. You can’t help feeling hopeful that there is a way to help kids.
Working on this movie has been especially meaningful for me because there isn’t much available for teens on TV and film that offers a cool alternative to hard drinking and hard partying for having fun.
We hope that showing the University of Tampa, and University of South Florida Harm Reduction program, will inspire other colleges and universities to teach how to calculate BAC, blood alcohol concentration. Less alcohol abuse will help to lower the assaults, date rapes, and various other drinking related crimes and injuries that presently endanger so many college students. Alcohol is so prevalent, yet college students and their parents are not aware of the consequences.
It’s crucial that the American public, and particularly teens and preteens get a clear picture of what happens with alcohol and substance abuse, but also how to avoid it, get out of it if you’re in it, and recover from it.
We’re particularly proud of the D-FY Drug Free Youth of North Port segment of the movie. For kids to be able to join other kids in sober society in high school is exciting in so many ways. First, for presenting an environment that is safe. Second, for promoting the choice to stay off drugs as exciting, positive, and rewarding, rather than the choice of the kids who are less than “cool.”
The need of programs for kids who have joined recovery in high school or college is particularly vital because we now know it takes years of positive reinforcement for recovery to work. We know kids don’t just get out of rehab and do well. They need a community and activities to keep them engaged in a positive way.