Teenagers talk about life in Hancock County at Youth Summit

Garner-Hayfield-Ventura and West Hancock students present their ideas and views about drugs, alcohol and life in Hancock County at the Youth Summit on Feb. 27 at the Britt United Methodist Church

Curran McLaughlin | The Leader

BRITT - Allies for Substance Abuse Prevention (ASAP) hosted the annual Hancock County Youth Summit on Feb. 27 at the Britt United Methodist Church.

Forty students from Garner-Hayfield-Ventura and West Hancock were randomly selected for the all-day affair.

The students spent their morning separated in groups where they took a survey and discussed the state of their communities in terms of drugs and alcohol associability, perception of authority figures and other aspects of their lives.

 That afternoon students chose specific groups to expand their thoughts and address. They presented their thoughts to the community.

  The community groups that were addressed was faith, coaches, law enforcement, school, parents, businesses and community events.

ASAP Director Karie Terhark said this is the fourth year that West Hancock and GHV students have combined.

Terhark said the event is a way to open a line of communication between the adults and the kids, which is typically under-utilized.

 “They might find what the kids perceive as happening and what’s really happening is not the same,” Terhark said. “We’re not telling them what’s going on. Kids are not comfortable telling someone else what’s happening.”

  Terhark believes it’s important to give teenagers a platform outside of social media and be able to discuss issues when one might not see eye to eye. 

Read the story in its entirety in the March 7 Leader.