Children of parents who talk to their teens regularly about drugs are 42% less likely to use drugs than those who don't, yet only a quarter of teens report having these conversations.

Red Ribbon Campaign ® Blog

Enter The 2012 Red Ribbon Contest

By Amy Goldstein on 10/03/2012 @ 11:04 AM

Families: Enter To Win $1,000 For Your School & An IPad For The Home

The National Family Partnership® (NFP) announces the national contest for its 27th annual Red Ribbon Week®, Oct. 23-31. Here’s how to enter to win $1,000 for your K-12 school and an iPad for the home:

  1. Students bring the Red Ribbon Week® message home by working alongside parents to decorate their front door, mailbox, fence, etc. with this year’s theme “The Best Me Is Drug Free™.”
  2. Take a photo with the family and your Red Ribbon Week® decoration, then upload to or by Nov. 2 (must be 18+ to upload your photos).
  3. The voting begins! Ask your family and friends to vote for your entry at Nov. 2-16. Ten lucky winners from regions across the U.S. will win. Winners will be announced at events at their winning schools in December.

“Students will once again take Red Ribbon Week’s® message of prevention home to their neighborhoods with this national contest,” said the NFP’s Volunteer President Peggy Sapp. “By decorating their homes together with this year’s Red Ribbon theme, families carry the message to their communities.” The nation’s oldest and largest drug prevention campaign reaches more than 80 million people nationwide.

The DEA is co-sponsoring this year’s national contest. "DEA is excited to partner with the National Family Partnership® on this contest that empowers communities to come together to talk about the drug problem,” said DEA Administrator Michele M. Leonhart. “Red Ribbon Week® is also when we honor DEA Special Agent Enrique ‘Kiki’ Camarena, who made the ultimate sacrifice to keep our communities safe.”

Adds the NFP’s Peggy Sapp: “Take the Red Ribbon Week® pledge across America to help children grow up safe, healthy and drug free.” Visit for contest information.

Check Out This Video About The Contest

About the NFP and Red Ribbon Week® The NFP was established in 1980, and is a national leader in drug prevention, education and advocacy. Its mission is to lead our nation’s families and communities in nurturing the full potential of healthy, drug-free youth. Red Ribbon Week® is the nation’s largest and oldest drug prevention campaign, reaching 80 million people. NFP created the campaign in response to the 1985 abduction and murder of DEA agent Enrique ‘Kiki’ Camarena.

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2017 National Red Ribbon Photo Contest Winners

Posted on 09/30/2012 @ 01:00 PM

Thank you to everyone who participated in the 2017 National Red Ribbon Photo Contest. We received hundreds of entries and votes in support of your entries. The contest is an opportunity to involve families and schools in spreading the Red Ribbon Week message widely in neighborhoods, communities and on social media. We are delighted to celebrate the following families, schools and communities working together to promote healthy, drug free kids.

Congratulations to the 20 winners from around the country who received the most votes in each category and region.

School Decoration Winners

Region 1 Winner Kelly Fox Braintree High School Braintree, MA

“This win is a perfect example to our students that when you put hard work and effort into all you do, good things can come from it. This year’s theme, ‘Your Future is Key so Stay Drug Free,’ started a great conversation with our students about their path in life. The theme was instrumental because I don’t think students in high school really get to see their future and how decisions made now can change their life in the future..”
Kelly Fox, Mother

The Red Ribbon contest allowed our students and faculty to come together to show their support for a drug free life. It is important to provide drug prevention education at an early age so that students understand the impact that drugs can have on an their overall well-being and on their future.”
Andrew Delery, Interim Headmaster

Region 2 Winner Christina Esteve Academy of Our Lady Glen Rock, NJ

“I have a family member who experienced drug addiction and I’ve seen firsthand how it affected his life. This is such a great program because it brings the whole community together for a common good. This contest allowed us to start an important dialogue about how important it is to stay drug free.”
Christina Esteve, Mother

“This is truly an honor as well as a reflection of the commitment our school has to the welfare of our children. I enjoyed seeing the entire school involved...children, faculty, parents and families. It is part of every school's obligation to educate the whole child and to provide them with the necessary strategies and skills to make wise choices and decisions.”
James Robert Newman, Principal

Region 3 Winner Vickie Shultz Cambridge Springs Jr./Sr. High School Cambridge Springs, PA

“The whole community responded. In one day, we had 2,000 visits from our school’s Facebook page. But, what I liked most about the contest was that my students were involved in it too. With the kids signing the board and voting every day, it reinforced the healthy lifestyle.”
Vickie Shultz, Mother & Educator

Region 4 Winner Jean Jupa East Lake Elementary Kissimmee, FL

“I think Red Ribbon Week helps unify the school because all grades are involved. The entire school gets together. The kids made keys, each with a different word about making good choices. Other students would pass by and say ‘look at that.’ It was a neat way to get students interested to learn more about it instead of just telling them to ‘just say no.’”
Jean Jupa, Teacher

Region 5 Winner Denise Terry Hartland Middle School Hartland, MI

“We want all of our students to contribute to our community and be aware to say no to drugs and help each other out when they are in need of help. We were so happy to participate and it was truly a community-wide event as we spread the word on our school’s website, newsletters and social media. We intend to use the prize to help expand our programs, like Club STAND (Students Taking A New Direction) and EBCE (Experienced based Career Education).”
Denise Terry, Teacher

“It is much easier to be proactive and prevent issues instead of responding to a serious problem. We enjoyed seeing all the students sign the drug free pledge and wear red for the Red Ribbon Week photo.”
Steve Livingway, Principal

Region 6 Winner Karina Rodriguez United South Middle School Laredo, TX

“The contest helped us talk to our students about drugs because it opened the door to have that conversation. I know some adults don’t mention it too much and just expect the students not to do drugs, but it’s something we do need to talk about to make sure they stay strong and make positive choices in their lives.”
Karina Rodriguez, School Counselor

Region 7 Winner Sherry Ross Dora R-3 School Dora, Mo

“We are so excited and know how important this issue is. Programs like Red Ribbon Week help us teach kids about drug abuse prevention. I can’t really put into words the importance of having a drug free message. It can make or break a kid. Kids need someone to believe in them to encourage them to avoid drugs in the first place. It gives them an opportunity to be successful in life.”
Sherry Ross, Teacher

Region 8 Winner Debbie Chatham Naples Elementary School Vernal, UT

“I don’t care where you are in the country, staying drug free is something we need to learn. It’s a national problem. These kids need to see more of these positive messages from programs like Red Ribbon Week. The photo contest pulled the school and the entire community together.”
Debbie Chatham, Principal

Region 9 Winner Noel Pickler George B. Miller Elementary School La Palma, CA

“We’re a small city so it was so exciting to see everyone rally and come together around such a positive message of drug prevention. This served as the ultimate toolkit to help our kids say no to drugs.”
Noel Pickler, Teacher

“I am thrilled that our school won. I am thankful to the parents, staff, and community members that made this happen. It was definitely a collaborative effort. Drug prevention is important because we know from research that prevention and early intervention reduces the impact of substance use later on in life.”
Dr. Stacy Chang, Principal

Region 10 Winner Terry Saunders Vista Middle School Ferndale, WA

“Both students and adults at our school worked hard making the background for the photo and getting the word out to parents and community to vote for our Natural High club. Drug addiction reaches all walks of life and it is important to educate our students. Our prevention club spreads the word that the majority of students do not use any type of substance through social norming campaigns.”
Terry Saunders, Counselor

Home Decoration Winners

Region 1 Winner Rivera Family Chapin Street School Ludlow, MA

“Our family looks forward to this contest each year. We still have our posters up from last year after my son, Gabriel, won the contest. This is truly a family affair. We believe it’s important to start having drug awareness conversations with our kids at a young age.”
Isabel Rivera, Mother

Region 2 Winner Ahmed Family Lackawanna Middle School Lackawanna, NY

“I could write a book on why drug prevention is so important. Addiction is really damaging. It wrecks lives. Not just the ones using, but everyone around them. My daughter had so much fun with this project. She loved doing the drawing and even more, she loved spreading the word.”
Tehany Ahmed, Mother

Region 3 Winner Shultz Family Cambridge Springs Jr./Sr. High School Cambridge Springs, PA

“Some of the neighborhood kids came over and we talked about Red Ribbon Week. I always say, ‘I hope you guys are making good decisions too.’ From what I’ve learned, every ten minutes someone in the US dies from a drug overdose. These students are our future workforce. They need to be productive in society. I don’t want them to become statistics.”
Vickie Shultz, Mother and Educator

Region 4 Winner Sims Family East Lake Elementary Kissimmee, FL

I was glad to help spread a good message. My kids and I talked about drugs as worked on the sign. It wasn’t our first discussion on the “don’t do drugs” topic, but doing stuff together and talking about that kind of thing opens up doors to future discussions and communications.”
Tory Sims, Father

Region 5 Winner Dusett Family Yale Junior High School Yale, MI

“My daughter, Ruth is thrilled to have won. I liked the important message of just spreading awareness about drug prevention. My daughter will be busy making good use of the iPad”
Jason Dusett, Fatherr

Region 6 Winner Brown Family Louisiana Virtual Charter Academy

“What I liked most about participating in the contest was getting everyone involved in doing a drug free contest and getting our family and their contacts to vote. It was a fun and educational experience for everyone.”
Kelsey Brown, Mother

“This is our third year to participate and we are thrilled that we have a winner! It was wonderful to participate in a contest focusing on such an important topic. The indirect effects of drug abuse can be just as significant as the direct effects and if we can prevent them from ever beginning, we are saving not only them but their future families from both heartache and harm.”
Gina Warren, Family Engagement Coordinator

Region 7 Winner Davison Family Dora R-III Dora, M0

“My brother died of a drug overdose and I think it’s really important to share a drug free message. Kids like active learning, not passive learning and Red Ribbon helps to do that. We make it fun but serious at the same time. We’re totally elated to have won."
Bev Davison, Teacher

"We are in a very small community and raising money for the students can be a challenge. The funds that will be generated from the contest will go to assist with Project Graduation for all of our high school students. This is a great message for them, that there are many other things to do on graduation night, other than using drugs or alcohol. ”
Rick Luna, Principal

Region 8 Winner Gustad Family Gayville-Volin High School Volin, SD

“We are super excited, especially for the school that’s in in need of extra funds. The contest was fun and with our community being small, everyone rallied around and got involved. We always try to promote being drug free and living a drug free life. Having Red Ribbon Week helps us to pump up the talk and keeps it ongoing.”
Amy Gustad, Mother

Region 9 Winner Oliva Family Country Hills Elementary Brea, CA

“I love Red Ribbon Week and we really liked the theme this year. We talked about what your future entails, how you become successful, what to do and what to avoid. It was fun. I’ve spoken to adults who remember participating in Red Ribbon activities as children. They remember it fondly. I believe it impacts young lives positively and that’s what we’re trying to do.”
Josie Oliva, Mother

“It's never too early to teach kids the importance of a healthy lifestyle. We are so grateful for the opportunity to further promote the message that being drug free is key to a great life!”
Trish Walsh, Principal

Region 10 Winner Kanzler Family Jemtegaard Middle School Washougal, WA

“I remember celebrating Red Ribbon Week twenty plus years ago. I just like that message that you don’t need to do certain things to be cool and it was great to have a national campaign going along with what I felt. In our home, we often talk about the things we should or shouldn’t do. Red Ribbon Week was hand-in-hand with what we already do, but in a fun and creative way.”
Megan Kanzler, Mother

“I am so very excited to hear the news that our student has won. Drug prevention is important because our students are our future and they deserve to know the facts about how drugs can harm their brains and forever impact their lives. Students deserve to know that there are other choices in their lives that will lead them towards success and happiness.”
Wendy Butler, Prevention and Intervention Specialist

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2014 National Red Ribbon Photo Contest Winners

Posted on 09/30/2012 @ 01:00 PM

Thank you to everyone who participated in the 2014 National Red Ribbon Photo Contest. We received hundreds of entries and over 188,000 votes in support of your entries. The purpose of the contest was to involve families and schools in spreading the Red Ribbon Week message. Based on the stories we've heard about families, schools and communities working together to promote healthy, drug free kids, we know it was a huge success.

We are delighted to announce the ten winners from around the country who received the most votes in each region/category. Congratulations to our winners.

School Decoration Winner

Amy Randle Harper Middle School Harper, TX

“This contest brought even more awareness to Red Ribbon Week and it lasted for a longer period of time. If it can prevent one person from using drugs and alcohol and make a positive impact on their life, then it was all worth it. Everyone took part in the contest. It was truly a team effort. We live in a wonderful community.”
Amy Randle, Teacher

“I’ve been a principal for seven years and a big part of the job is concern for my students’ health and well-being. We must encourage our students to make good decisions daily. That’s why we invest so much in prevention efforts. We are thrilled to be able to use the $1,000 prize to continue to promote this important message.”
Dean Eckert, Principal

Home Decoration Winners

Region 1 Winner Roberts Family Stacy Middle School Milford, MA

“Red Ribbon Week is important to me because the more you talk to your children and the more involved they are with positive projects like this, the less likely they are to venture out into the world of trial and error. My hope is to fill my kids with so much knowledge on the effects of drugs that they can be positive role models for their friends and make smart choices as they get older.”
Denise Roberts, Mother

“What I liked most about the contest was seeing students take initiative for their own well-being and the well-being of others. Red Ribbon Week is a wonderful focal point for discussion and education. The more education we give students at a younger age, the more time they have to develop an awareness and knowledge.”
Nancy Angelini, Principal

Region 2 Winner Mosher Family Warwick Valley High School Warwick, NY

“‘Love Yourself. Be Drug Free.’ means respecting and loving yourself enough to not get into a life that involves using drugs. I love Red Ribbon Week because it’s an opportunity for our whole school district to get together and present a unified message in a positive way.”
Taylor Mosher, Student, 17 years old

“What I liked most about the Red Ribbon Photo Contest is that it not only brought awareness to our students but to the community. Drug awareness is an important weapon in the fight against addiction. Red Ribbon Week is so essential because it allows the community to participate in activities that promote healthy living for our youth and community.”
Dr. Larry Washington, Principal

Region 3 Winner Kubasky Family Ramsay Elementary Mount Pleasant, PA

“While decorating our door together, I had the opportunity to talk to my kids about a serious topic in a relaxed, casual setting, in a non-confrontational way. We discussed school dances and other topics, as well as what to do if anyone offers them drugs or alcohol. My children are older so they’ll be faced with these difficult decisions soon. I want them to be educated and prepared.”
Kerri Kubasky, Mother

“In today’s society, children are exposed to so much more than we were growing up. The pressure from their peers is much stronger. Here in Western Pennsylvania, we have a big Heroin problem. We’ve been seeing lots of overdoses. To win this contest and use the money for prevention programs for our kids will be very beneficial.”
Lance Benteler, Principal

Region 4 Winner Paquin Family The Academy for Teaching and Learning Chester, SC

“I truly believe that the Red Ribbon Week Campaign is very important. It amazes me what children, even kindergarteners, already know about drugs. It is a scary world out there and anything we, as adults, parents and teachers can do to keep our children from using alcohol and drugs is worth the effort. For us, it’s really a year-round effort, not just one week.”
Jennifer “Nurse JJ” Paquin, Mother and School Nurse

“Part of our job in educating students is educating them to understand the importance of staying drug free so they can be successful citizens. If we don’t, who will? It’s the responsibility of every individual in a child’s life. The $1,000 prize for our school will help us do even more to educate the students and we are really excited about that.”
Robyn Caldwell, Principal

Region 5 Winner Fergus Family St. Eugene School Chicago, IL

“Red Ribbon Week and this contest are great opportunities to educate our children and raise awareness about the importance of being healthy and drug free. The best part of this competition is always bringing families together at St. Eugene School to spread an important message to our children about drug prevention.”
Diane Fergus, Mother

“Children are under much more pressure now than they used to be. The use of drugs can become an escape unless they are given opportunities to channel their energy and time elsewhere. Red Ribbon Week allows our school to truly concentrate on educating the students. We work as a community to engage them in thinking of other options than using drugs. We use peer pressure in a positive way.”
Jane Kusinski, Assistant Principal

Region 6 Winner Remerow Family Honey Island School Slidell, LA

“I just loved seeing Kendall’s joy and excitement during the competition. To spread the word about our entry, Kendall shared information with her teacher, who shared with principal, who sent a newsletter to the whole school. They really rallied behind her. It also made an impact on the neighbors, who adored the idea of the contest and the decorations - and supported us by voting.”
Kristin Remerow, Mother

“All the promise that children have - if we just encourage that and mold that early on then they can be great leaders. This contest is a venue and a way for them to express themselves and share a positive message. Kids learn messages best in their peer group, so when peers talk about making good choices, it rubs off on one another.”
Mary Jane Smith, Principal

Region 7 Winner Clark Family Sigourney Elementary School Sigourney, IA

“I was so surprised to learn we won again. We participated in the contest last year as a way to have family time. It’s now evolved into our wonderful town rallying behind us in support of this drug-free message. The contest has also helped me discuss this topic with my kids.”
Megan Clark, Mother

“These children are our future and we want them to be prepared for anything they face. Red Ribbon Week brings awareness to the community by focusing on being drug free and making good choices. We’re very proud of our school and the family members within our community who worked together to make this happen.”
Deanna Hutchings, Principal

Region 8 Winner Larson Family Gayville-Volin School Gayville, SD

“The contest really gave us an optimal time to talk about drugs to our kids. Since they were hearing about it at school and then decorating our home, it just made sense to have that conversation. The contest also helped us spread a positive message in our community and beyond. A lot of people from neighboring towns drive past our house on the way to work and they loved the message.”
Staci Larson, Mother

“Red Ribbon Week helps our teachers segue into discussions about drugs at school. We can bring this up in the best way to combat the dangers of substance abuse. This contest was great for our community and school. It opened the doors for a lot of positive conversations and dialogue.”
Patrick Beeman, Principal

Region 9 Winner Rezkalla Family Intensive Learning Center Lakewood, CA

“This contest helped me talk to my children about drugs. My son and daughter are young, they didn’t know about drugs but this opened the door for a friendly conversation. It was also good to spread the word about the topic during Halloween because more people paid attention to it. Neighbors asked us about our decorations and we talked to them about it.”
Shereen Elyas, Mother

“I think Red Ribbon Week and this contest are so important because drugs have become not only a concern among individuals, but a concern in our community and country. One of the ways to keep our students drug free is to help them understand the ramifications of making poor choices. Drugs destroy lives and take away opportunities.”
Dr. Isel Taylor, Principal

Region 10 Winner Benninger Family Columbia Academy West Linn, OR

“Talking about drugs with your children can be a difficult conversation. Having Red Ribbon Week put these lessons in the context of a competition helped open that door and helped the children be engaged, interested and invested in the conversation. But, the contest also helped spread the message beyond our family. During Halloween, we had our entry on the door and as Trick-or-Treaters came to the door, I could hear them reading the message aloud and talking about what it meant.”
Alison Benninger, Mother

“I loved that the contest opened up dialogue among our students about drug awareness and being drug free. I especially enjoyed that the theme of the contest, ‘Love Yourself. Be Drug Free,’ emphasized the value of self- worth. We are so very proud of Jack and his dedication and creativity!”
Kathy Hart, Principal

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2018 National Red Ribbon Photo Contest Winners

Posted on 09/30/2012 @ 01:00 PM

Thank you to everyone who participated in the 2018 National Red Ribbon Photo Contest. We received hundreds of entries and tens of thousands of votes in support of your entries. The contest is an opportunity to involve families and schools in spreading the Red Ribbon Week message widely in neighborhoods, communities and on social media. We are delighted to celebrate the following families, schools and communities working together to promote healthy, drug free kids.

Congratulations to the 20 winners from across the country.

Entries With The Most Votes Per Region

School Entries

Region 1 Winner Kelly Fox Braintree High School Braintree, MA

“I really liked the way it brought students and faculty together. I am so proud of the way my students advocated for their group and spread the message to all of their families, friends and teachers to vote. Asking for the votes meant students had to talk about the meaning behind the project and allowed for many conversations around drug prevention.”
Kelly Fox, Educator

“I am thrilled for the school, and exceptionally proud of the students in the [SADD] chapter who consistently work hard to make our school a better place” -"
Christopher Scully, Headmaster

Region 2 Winner Paola Stauffer Orlando Science School Orlando, FL

"The best part of the contest was bringing the community together and the challenge of gathering so many people for one goal. We had almost 1400 people in the picture including parents, staff and student K-12. The challenge of writing in the field and putting the message together was interesting, but working as a team made it happened."
Paola Stauffer, Dean of students and Character Education Coordinator

Region 3 Winner Bev Davidson Dora R-3 School Dora, MO

"The thing I like most about the contest is that the whole school rallies to support our efforts. They work together and ask every day how we are doing. It is a goal that our students, parents, teachers, support staff, and administrators strive to achieve. It also keeps an awareness of our drug prevention efforts going throughout the school."
Bev Davison, Educator

"We have had some students through the years who have strayed in the wrong path and have suffered the consequences of drug abuse. If we can educate students so that they make better choices, we will help them become successful."
Rick Luna, High School Principal

Region 4 Winner Erica Guevara Brownsville Early College High School Brownsville, TX

"My favorite part of being in this contest was the camaraderie that came out of the preparations. The students spent everyday at lunch in my classroom for about a month. They went through several ideas and attempted to execute each of them before deciding on their final design. I enjoyed watching them work together for a final goal."
Erica K Guevara, English II Teacher

Region 5 Winner Deborah Chatham Naples Elementary School Vernal, UT

"We are so excited! This is our third year to win our region and it would not happen without the support of our amazing parent activity team and the support of our community."
Deborah Chatham, Principal

Home Entries

Region 1 Winner Schultz Family Cambridge Springs Jr./Sr. High School Cambridge Springs, PA

" The contest is another way of leading into a conversation with my children. I've always talked to them about drugs and alcohol and it has helped them to ask questions and open up with me."
Vicki Schultz, Mother

Region 2 Winner Moore Family Louisiana Virtual Charter Academy Baton Rouge, LA

" Carl is very happy and thankful for winning the contest. He didn't expect to win, and it is a great blessing that he is very thankful for."
Micah Moore

"Drugs are running rampant in our state and prohibit the growth of education. We are thrilled at the opportunity to promote a drug-free environment and continue to teach a healthy lifestyle for our students from an early age."
Jara Bode, Principal

Region 3 Winner Martin Family Dora R-3 School Dora, MO

"As an educator, I see the impact that drugs can have on our students' lives. By making drug prevention education part of our curriculum and daily conversations, we can make a difference in the lives of our community members"
Elizabeth Martin, Educator

Region 4 Winner Pringle Family South Rock Creek School Shawnee, OK

“The contest helped us talk to our children about drugs because they asked "why are we doing this?" which opened up the discussion on their terms. Drug prevention is so important because awareness is the biggest key in any educational endeavor."
Pringle Family

Region 5 Winner Beas Family Jimenez Elementary School Guadalupe, CA

“Working with school age children and having children myself motivates me to find ways to share the drug free message. Decorating my house with a drug free message, and having my family support me in my decision was a great experience.”
Elizabeth Beas Mandujano, Parent

Judges Awards

School Entries

Most Creative Melek Atalay Florence L. Walther Elementary School Lumberton, NJ

“I personally like decorating very much and support the idea of their impact on education. I believe a drug-free message through a contest is a great way to spread the word for drug prevention. Although being drug-free is not in the vocabulary of our little ones, this decoration took their attention and gave me a chance to inform them about how our choices affect our future. I felt accomplished about decorating our school.”
Melek Atalay, School Counselor

“I am very excited about winning the contest! This is such an honor and we are proud to receive this recognition. I would like to thank my guidance counselor, Melek Atalay, for her hard work and vision for this contest. She was the driving force behind our success!”
Mrs. Coletta L. Graham, Principal

Best Use of Theme Ariel Brown Hueytown Elementary School Hueytown, AL

"Our students are presented with many situations in which a choice can influence their entire lives. Being educated and understanding the risks and consequences of drug and alcohol abuse can lead to better choices."
Ariel Brown

"Drug prevention is the future. Without having drug prevention conversations, we are not promised a bright future. We have to educate as many as we can regarding the use of drugs."
Dr. Cortney C. Slaughter, Principal

Most Parent Involvement Charity Saddler Alta Brown Elementary School Garden City, KS

"Drugs and alcohol negatively affect our brains and our bodies and our ability to learn and grow. Since children are our future, it is important to begin prevention early."
Julie Koerperich, Principal

Best Use of School/Community Deborah Chatham Naples Elementary Vernal, UT

"Sadly, at this young age, too many children see the effects of drugs on people they know. If we can help them avoid getting involved in drugs, then we've accomplished our goal, and many times that means we've saved lives."
Deborah Chatham, Principal

Most Educational Vang Yang Meyler Street Elementary Torrance, CA

"It helped provide my students with visuals while learning about staying away from drugs and the outcomes of this decision. My students all have learning disabilities, so this was a fun way to discuss this with them."
Vang Yang

"I think that it's extremely important for us to impress upon our students the importance of making the correct choices in life (being drug free) and the consequences of making incorrect choices. Because using drugs can alter your life choices and can lead to prematurely ending your life. Also, it's important for us to equip our students with the knowledge of being drug free and that knowledge will assist them with making good choices and combating peer pressure."
Elizabeth Pratt, Principal

Home Entries

Best Use of Theme Greene Family International Studies Elementary Charter School Albany, GA

"It's a good thing to have Red Ribbon Week and contests as a reminder of why it is important to stay drug free and how important it is to talk about it often. The contest help me to be able to show and explain to my children the importance of staying drug free and how drugs could affect their lives."
Greene Family

" What I like most about Red Ribbon Week is the fun the students and the adults have decorating as well as the fun activities we do to support the message of living drug free."
Dr. Lynn James, Principal

Most Creative Clark Family Sigourney Elementary School Sigourney, IA

"The iPad is just a bonus. Our reasoning for doing these contests is education, family time and helping out our school community."
Megan Clark

"Our child are our future. Teaching them at such a young age about the importance of being drug free will better prepare them for when they are faced with the decision to abstain from or give in to peer pressure."
Deanna Hutchings, Pk-6 Principal

Best Use of Family/Community Fergus Family St. Eugene School Chicago, IL

"We are so excited to be one of the winners of the Red Ribbon contest again! The contest is a great way for our school and community to raise awareness about drug prevention and living a healthy drug free life."
Fergus Family

"Drug use and abuse in our country is at an epidemic state. Our youth are being exposed to drugs at an earlier rate. As a society we hear on the news [about] the opioid crisis. Parents and schools must continue to work together to teach and share the message of making good choices and living a healthy life."
Catherine Scotkovsky, Principal

Most Ambitious Rohda Family East Butler School Brainard, NE

"Since Red Ribbon Week is about being drug free, it was a great opportunity to reinforce those ideas with my son. Letting him participate in the project helped make him feel like he could influence others to make positive choices."
Nathan Rohda, Father

Most Educational Faulkner Family Rancho Buena Vista High School Vista, CA

"My mom saw a couple of people who were walking with their dog come up to the sign and read it. One of the neighbors had signed it too. Sometimes people would slow down when they are driving past our house and look at the poster. It’s kind of hard to miss because of the giant red bow. As far as I know, no one has ever put anything like that on their front gate in our neighborhood."
Cierra Faulkner, Student

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2016 National Red Ribbon Photo Contest Winners

Posted on 09/30/2012 @ 01:00 PM

Thank you to everyone who participated in the 2016 National Red Ribbon Photo Contest. We received hundreds of entries and close to 100,000 votes in support of your entries. The contest is an opportunity to involve families and schools in spreading the Red Ribbon Week message widely in neighborhoods, communities and on social media. We are delighted to celebrate the following families, schools and communities working together to promote healthy, drug free kids.

Congratulations to the 20 winners from around the country who received the most votes in each category and region.

School Decoration Winners

Region 1 Winner Kelly Fox Braintree High School Braintree, MA

“What I liked most about the contest was seeing how many people were involved, pledging to live a healthy, drug-free life and I liked that it brought students and teachers together. We want to use the money to educate students about the risks of opioid abuse.”
Kelly Fox, Mother

Region 2 Winner James Pierson Red Bank Middle School Red Bank, NJ

“Drug prevention is so important and middle school is an important age to receive that message. What I love most about Red Ribbon Week is engaging the kids. We had 200 students involved in the photo for the contest and it certainly helped us further our conversations about being drug free.”
James Pierson, Vice Principal

Region 3 Winner Darla Allerton Ingomar Middle School Pittsburgh, PA

“The contest was a great activity to start important conversations with our students about drug prevention. Every student participated in the contest by naming their natural high on a paw print (because our school mascot is a tiger). Parents voted and also received prevention tips and information. Everyone had a role and shared ownership of this project. We are very excited for our school community!”
Darla Allerton, School Counselor

Region 4 Winner Paola Stauffer Orlando Science Elementary Orlando, FL

“Red Ribbon Week is one of the most exciting and fun weeks of the entire school year. If you ask the students what their favorite week is, they always say ‘Red Ribbon.’ We decided to enter the contest because we liked the challenge and we knew it was a way to get the families involved and pass on the drug prevention message. Everyone participated.”
Paola Stauffer, School Administrator

“The contest allowed our students to see how working together can help promote a great cause. Our plan is to reinvest the prize money back into next year's Red Ribbon Week and into our character education program.”
Michael Singleton, Principal

Region 5 Winner Kelly Prichard Allen East High School Harrod, OH

“We displayed our poster in front of the football field so when people came to see the games, they would see the poster too. Drugs have a lasting impact in all stages of life. Kids nowadays are too busy and not equipped to deal with stress, so they turn to drugs to relieve pressure and escape from negative things. It’s important to teach skills to avoid them and to be aware of the dangers.”
Kelly Prichard, Teacher & SADD Advisor

“It contest an avenue to allow conversation to become positive and it helped because students were not afraid to voice their opinions about bad decision making. Red Ribbon Week makes it cool to do the right thing.”
Scott Rose, Teacher

Region 6 Winner Dhanielle Atencio Milan Elementary School Milan, NM

“The contest helped us talk to our students about living drug free. We explained to them that is was for drug prevention and with that we did a lot of teambuilding. We showed them that it took teamwork to take the pictures and it takes teamwork to not do drugs. It brought a sense of community. We are sort of a small school so it was great that everyone got involved. ”
Danielle Atencio, School Counselor

Region 7 Winner Kasie Webb Cameron R-I School District Cameron, MO

“I’m very excited and proud of my students. We have a big drug problem in our area. Red Ribbon Week adds value to what we are trying to teach our students and kids get rewarded. If you make it fun, students will remember. By talking about their goals, we are helping students achieve them. ”
Kasie Webb, Guidance

Region 8 Winner Annalee Johnson Naples Elementary School Vernal, UT

“This was a great way to pull the entire school together. This year's theme, “Y.O.L.O.,” was a fun way to talk to the students about reasons why it is not good to get involved with drugs. Instead on saying things like "drugs are dangerous" we focused on the positive side and talked about the good things you can do in life when you stay away from drugs.”
Analee Johnson, Parent

“According to parents and staff, this was the best Red Ribbon week our school has had in many years. It was fun, engaging and kept all involved. Our students were excited to take part in the activities, and because of the activities, were more open to talking about avoiding drugs, staying safe, etc.”
Deborah Y. Chatham, Principal

Region 9 Winner Jennifer Ferrara Charles G. Emery Elementary School Buena Park, CA

“We love Red Ribbon Week because it’s all about community and healthy living. By entering the photo contest, it creates school spirit and gives all of the kids and their families something to do that generates conversation and discussion about drug prevention for those 17 days. It helps to go beyond the one week of Red Ribbon Week. It’s a life commitment.”
Jennifer Ferrara, School Counselor

“Participating in the contest definitely helped teach our students about drugs. We focus on making good choices and respecting oneself. Students need to understand the risks involved and how to make good choices for their future. We will use the prize money to continue preventing drug use in the future.”
Julie Linnecke, Pricipal

Region 10 Winner Jean Zuber Riley Creek School Gold Beach, OR

“We are thrilled! Drug prevention is so important because if we don't talk about it and how we need to be drug free, students will think it is normal and ok without realizing all the negative consequences. It makes them aware of the consequences of taking those risks.”
Jean Zuber, Student Council Advisor & Teacher

$1,000 Bonus Prize - Sponsored by ARCpoint Labs

Jeniffer Gude Air Base K-8 Center for International Education Homestead, Florida

“It's something that the whole school took part in. It brought us all together. Sometimes it's hard to get the 1st graders to do something with the 5th and 6th graders. This initiative is a way to prepare our students for the future and try to have them make the best decisions and have a healthy way of living.”
Jeniffer Gude, Teacher

Home Decoration Winners

Region 1 Winner Rivera Family Paul R. Baird Middle School Ludlow, MA

“We live on a busy street so a lot of people were able to see our Red Ribbon Week decoration. When they saw it, it brought up questions and we had the chance to talk about the importance of staying away from drugs. This has been a wonderful opportunity to bring drug awareness to our town and I'm very proud of my son.”
Isabel Rivera, Mother

Region 2 Winner Johnston Family Geneseo Central School Geneseo, NY

“The contest was a great way to communicate to my children about being drug free while displaying a positive message in a creative way. It is not just us preaching to them but rather focusing on the good things and actually doing something to get them involved. My daughter, Lydia picked the theme and it combined her two favorite things, dancing and music.”
Joan Johnston, Mother

“It is important to give students the facts [about drugs] at an early age and to help them develop good decision-making skills. I think this is an outstanding accomplishment for the Johnston family, our students and our community.”
Craig Veley, Middle School/High School Assistant Princiapl

Region 3 Winner Spencer Family Abingdon Elementary School Williamsburg, VA

“I loved being creative with the decoration and sharing the message online. People who walked by my home saw the message, but I reached many more people by spreading the message on social media. The school helped spread the word because drug prevention is really important to the school. Everyone was behind it and it’s great because now the school has money to help further the cause.”
Marissa Spencer, Teacher

Region 4 Winner Trought Family Grayson High School Grayson, GA

“What I liked most about participating in the contest was the positivity. There’s so much negativity in the world and this brought the community together. You cannot turn on the news or the television in general without some horrible story about drug abuse. Red Ribbon Week gives kids knowledge and the incentive to spread the word to their peers not to do it.”
Jean Trought, Mother

Region 5 Winner McGovern Family St. Eugene School Chicago, IL

“We decided to enter the contest as a family project to support drug prevention, since our children are learning about the topic at school. The goal was to have the message hit home with our kids. I believe this message shouldn't be a week; it should be a lifelong thing. As a bonus, we also brought awareness to our neighborhood.”
Susie McGovern, Mother

Region 6 Winner McDonald Family Mountain Peak Elementary School Midlothian, TX

“The contest created an opportunity to have a discussion with our kids. This topic is sort of taboo and we usually shield our children from things like this, but with this project, we were able to talk about it with them. It is not easy to explain the difference between medicine and drugs. I'm a cancer survivor so it helped us explain to our daughters what drugs make us healthy vs. drugs that don't make us healthy.”
Jackie McDonald, Mother

“Our organization has been conducting Red Ribbon Week activities for years. We are very excited and blessed that the McDonald family showed support for her community and Red Ribbon Week. The contest encouraged students to learn more about the purpose of Red Ribbon Week and how substances both legal and illegal can have harmful effects.”
Tom Kowatch, Program Coordinator, Reach Council

Region 7 Winner Paulson Family Dora R-III Springfield, MO

“I was proud to decorate my home with a drug free message. When neighborhood kids came trick-or-treating, it sparked their curiosity and I was able to spread the message to them and their parents. I’m really glad I participated."
Brett Paulson

It was great to see the kids rally together in the contest to try to prevent drug use and to win. I think it is an easier process to educate and prevent drug abuse than to overcome it.”
Beverly Davison, Teacher

Region 8 Winner Hejna Family Gayville-Volin High School Yankton, SD

“The contest really gave us an optimal time to talk about drugs to our kids. Since they were hearing about it at school and then decorating our home, it just made sense to have that conversation. The contest also helped us spread a positive message in our community and beyond. A lot of people from neighboring towns drive past our house on the way to work and they loved the message.”
Staci Larson, Mother

Region 9 Winner Oliva Family Country Hills Elementary Brea, CA

“I felt like the entire experience was to build a stronger connection among the children and the adults in their lives, in our community. Our family, friends, school and community came together as a united front. We wanted to do our part and help make an impact. When we lead by example, our children are more likely to see the importance of living a drug free life and follow that by making healthy choices.”
Josie Oliva, Mother

“We want all of our students and families to live a long, healthy, happy life, and choosing to be drug-free and educated about drugs is the first step. We cannot thank the Oliva Family enough for taking this upon themselves on behalf of our school.”
Trish Walsh, Principal

Region 10 Winner Carino Family North Valley High School Grants Pass, OR

“I love that the contest involves the family and the school at the same time. Drugs can destroy families. If families are destroyed, it creates a domino effect. Crime rates go up, kids drop out of school, and so on. I'm so happy my daughter's school will receive $1000 for drug prevention.”
Cora Carino, Mother

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